IIRS Series and Rules - Oval Championship
Welcome to the Internet International Racing Series - IIRS

Before we start you should realise not all information is available anymore. Some information got lost in the time that offline racing was controlled by sending each other emails. Some information got lost because of conflicts which led to people withhelding information and some information just got lost.

That having said, it will mean the description of the early era of IIRS will be short and may be even contain errors. If you find any errors, just let us know and we will correct it.

The early years 1998 - 2001:
The first years IIRS was directed by Mike Spinelli, Brian Dembinski and Jima Machalinek. After a sucessfull roadchampionship in 1997 and the running of the Indy 500, a oval championship was added in 1998 to mimic the IRL.
The rules stated that first laps completed and second finishing position in your local race would determine your IIRS finishing position. When tied, the AI strength and next the average speed would be used as tiebreakers. This system asked for a good knowledge of your own speed compared with the AI. Also, the AI should show comparable speed in qualification and race trim. Most of the original tracks have this, so the system worked.

The point system used in that time was similar to the game's rules, with the exception that a point was given for the fastest lap instead of the amount of laps lead. As laps lead was taken into account into the results it might have a role, but that is lost in time.
The drivers scored as follows:

    20 point to 1st position
    16 points to 2nd position
    14 points to 3rd position
    12 points to 4th position
    10 points to 5th position
    8 points to 6th position
    6 points to 7th position
    5 points to 8th position
    4 points to 9th position
    3 points to 10th position
    2 points to 11th position
    1 points to 12th position and beyond

For the pole position and the fastest last lap one point was credited.

The years 2001 - 2004:
Somewhere at the start of 2001 a big discussion seems to have taken place. As the details of that discussion are not clear I will not delve into it. The result however is that Diego Munoz took over as director. This also meant a break from finishing position determining the outcome. For Diego it was about 'finish fast to finish first'. No matter the finishing position, your accumulated local race time would determine your finishing position, if you finished on the lead lap of course! This was a jump away from the 'To finish first you have to finish first' idea and discussion, even 10 (!) years later, was quite bitter. According to a former Director it even would even lead to the demise of IIRS in later seasons and the lack of cross series participation. He might have had a point in the latter.

When Diego took over Director the point system changed several times.
In 2003 the Oval Series changed to an IRL style pointsystem. The pole position point and fastest last lap point remained. A hard charger bonus of two points was added. This hard charger bonus was initially thought out to give extra points to the lower scoring drivers, but never really worked out as intended. The 2003 Oval Series drivers were scored as follows:

    50 point to 1st position
    40 points to 2nd position
    35 points to 3rd position
    32 points to 4th position
    30 points to 5th position
    28 points to 6th position
    26 points to 7th position
    24 points to 8th position
    22 points to 9th position
    20 points to 10th position
    19 points to 11th position
    18 points to 12th position
    17 points to 13th position
    16 points to 14th position
    15 points to 15th position
    14 points to 16th position
    13 points to 17th position
    12 points to 18th position
    11 points to 19th position
    no more than 19 drivers were scored in the 2003 season.

Drivers who were absent, could send an email to the Director and would then be scored also. This was rather controversial, as drivers were handed points, based on whoever emailed first about not showing up. A few drivers were notorious for gaining points (and positions in the standings!) through this system.

With Diego Munoz leaving the post of Director, handing it over to Sander Maas more change was in the air.

The years 2004 - 2009:
As real life took away much of Diego Munoz' time he left the position of Director early in the 2004 and handed the Director role over to Sander Maas. Where Sander left the points as is in 2004 to avoid any confusion. 2005 once again saw changes in the point system. The Oval Series kept their IRL style points, the hard charger bonus was cut back to one point, as such a bonus was used in the reallife series that year.

More and more races were so called 'combined races' where results would apply to both the Roadcourse and Oval Championship. Also in 2005 and 2006 the provisional rule was used, similar to the dnq/DNS rule during Diego's directorship. For each race a driver participated, he would receive a provisional start. If a driver could or would not participate in the next race he would still be scored. This rule was used to the point that combined races would lead to fields of up 38 drivers, while only 20 or so drivers really participated. Subsequently the provisional rule was dropped in 2007, leading to smaller fields, but at least all drivers took part in the race.

In 2009 the biggest change of IIRS came when the two series were combined to one unified series. The real life series had already merged in 2008, but taking a cautionary approach, IIRS merged one season later. Before that it was already clear that continueing IIRS with two championships would be hard. Either the Roadcourse series or Oval series would have to give in and in the end, the real life series determined the outcome.

The years 2010 and beyond:
In 2010 John Howlett took over as director, but changes were little. With a solid group of drivers John didn't see much need to change. The only visible changes were more accurate versions of the original tracks build by a group of devoted trackbuilders. The competitiveness remained and still is the important reason of the success of IIRS. However, in 2012 discussions about porting over to a new game popped up, since many of the drivers had trouble running a now 17 year old game. As a result, at the end of 2013 it was decided 2014 would be the final season for IIRS in ICR2. It is unclear whether the series will continue in a different form at this time.

John Howlett
IIRS Director