The Legends series will almost have the complete field of late 1980s Winston Cup cars, with the news that the 1987 NASCAR Pontiac Grand Prix is coming to iRacing in the 2023 Season 4 update.
It joins the original releases of the Chevrolet Monte Carlo and Ford Thunderbird from June 2020, which were later joined by the Buick Lesabre as the B licence fixed series remains reasonably popular, including with iRacing Executive Director and NASCAR Hall of Fame member Dale Earnhardt Jr, who has also been involved with the revival of the North Wilkesboro Speedway circuit.
Back in September 2022, Earnhardt Jnr shared photos of the #43 Petty Enterprises car driven that year by Richard Petty, with fellow Pontiac drivers including Rusty Wallace, Neil Bonnett, J.D McDuffie and Joe Rutman.
Wallace was the highest scoring Pontiac driver that season, finishing fifth in the championship, with Richard Petty eighth. It means the only manufacturer missing is Oldsmobile, but as the Buick LeSabre shared a front wheel drive H platform with the Delta 88 as a fellow GM brand, along with the 650hp V8 engine, it’s not a particularly major omission.
The Generation 3 cars used from 1981 until 1991 saw the fastest qualifying lap of Daytona in 1987 at 210.364mph, which still stands today, and also led to the introduction of smaller carbs, restrictor plates and roof flaps with the risk of cars going airborne in accidents and blowovers (which are replicated in iRacing).
It’s great to see a series running older cars not only remain popular, but get some ongoing support from iRacing. Maybe one day they’ll also do the same for a European road series (alongside the Kamel GT series of late 80s, and the Grand Prix Legends championship running the 1967 Lotus 49 F1 car). Given the American perspective, classic 1960s saloon cars would allow for a mix of Ford Mustangs and Falcons, Lotus Cortinas and Mini Coopers.
The 1987 NASCAR Pontiac Grand Prix joins the Porsche 963 on the list of confirmed new cars for Season 4, with the new Kern Country track and an update for Zandvoort.
You can sign up to iRacing, here (and credit your referral to ORD, which we’d appreciate!). And see all vehicles included in your basic subscription, or what you can access by paying more, in our full official iRacing car list, here.