Reigning Supercars champion Scott McLaughlin is a confirmed starter for the IndyCar’s new official iRacing Series beginning this weekend.
McLaughlin will represent Team Penske, who he conducted three tests for earlier this year and was announced to make his race debut in the American open-wheel series in May at the Indianapolis road course.
Whether that event will go ahead, given the COVID-19 pandemic, is up in the air – but McLaughlin will have the chance to impress US fans even sooner.
The 26-year-old will form part of a four-car Penske iRacing IndyCar fleet alongside regulars Will Power, Simon Pagenaud and Josef Newgarden.
McLaughlin is running the series in addition to contesting the Supercars All Stars Eseries beginning April 8.
“They’re going to race around 4-6pm EST Saturdays so for me that’s 6-8am [AEST] Sundays,” McLaughlin told Supercars.com.
“It’s cool, I’ve got plenty on.
“It’s going to be perfect for New Zealand viewers on my [Twitch] stream because it’s three hours ahead there so it will be 9am, which works out well.
“But I just want to race, I just want to drive and race those guys.
“I like that they’re fixed set-ups because you have just got to drive the thing and get better and that’s something that I enjoy probably more so.”
The first race of the online competition will take place this weekend – Sunday morning Australian time – at a track to be determined by a fan vote.
The final four circuits in the mix to host Round 1 were Watkins Glen, Montreal, Auto Club and Michigan.
“All of the boys are going to be doing it… I think they’re similar to what the V8 guys have been doing, everyone has been trying to sort out simulators so it’s pretty funny,” said McLaughlin.
The Shell V-Power Racing Supercars star this week launched a Twitch channel to allow people to follow his progress via a stream of his sim racing activities.
“It’s a little bit of a different dynamic, it’s just cool, the interaction level is higher,” he said.
“I’m not the best on there by any means, I have still got a lot to learn but it’s cool to be able to race around and talk and interact with the fans.
“It’s been a good little addition to my life.”