4 min read

What is Fantasy Dirt Racing (#FantasyDirt)?

What is Fantasy Dirt Racing (#FantasyDirt)?
Photo by Diana Orey / Unsplash

As with stick and ball sports, dirt track racing has seen fantasy games evolve to enhance the experience and create additional personal investment into the action on the track. I've begun referring to this as Fantasy Dirt or #FantasyDirt where hashtags are prevalent (@dirt_info on Twitter, btw).

There are two primary #FantasyDirt providers: DirtDraft and MyRacePass (MRP). Both of these are available via web browser and app. MyRacePass is more widely known for being the source of official timing and scoring at tracks across the country, but they are beginning to emphasize their #FantasyDirt offering. DirtDraft is exclusively #FantasyDirt.

There are quite a few differences between the two providers that I will highlight throughout, but the biggest difference is that MyRacePass #FantasyDirt is available at any track, and for every class running on that given day, that uses MRP for Timing and Scoring. Whereas, DirtDraft focuses primarily on touring series, like Lucas Oil Late Model Dirt Series (LOLMDS), World of Outlaws (WoO), United States Modified Touring Series (USMTS), XR, All Star Circuit of Champions (ASCoC) USAC Sprints, Midgets and Triple Crown, and Southern Nationals.

MyRacePass - Pick 'em Style
In the MRP version of #FantasyDirt, the official scorer takes the entire field of drivers across a given class and creates groups of three. You (the player) then pick who, out of each grouping, you believe will finish highest in the running order of the main event.

Points are awarded based on where each driver finishes in the running order and you are awarded bonus points if you correctly selected the highest scoring driver of the grouping. The

There are two types of leaderboards within the MRP #FantasyDirt experience. One for each class and one for the entire event. The event leaderboard is presented most prominently by MRP.

The MRP #FantasyDirt experience is great for the "at the track" experience. It provides an opportunity to get familiar with local and support class drivers. It also creates an investment in the outcome in races that you might not otherwise find compelling (Hornets, I'm looking at you).

As of now, MRP doesn't provide any rewards for performance. They have (or still are) doing giveaways of event tickets, etc. for participating in their #FantasyDirt, but most of these are randomly selected rather than being tied to any type of performance.

DirtDraft - Salary Cap Style
In the DirtDraft version of #FantasyDirt, each driver is assigned a salary, usually between $18,000 and $22,000. You (the player) are given a $100,000 salary cap to select a lineup consisting of 5 drivers. (Think DraftKings or FanDuel)

Points are awarded based on the drivers finishing position in the Feature (A-Main, Main Event, etc.). The winning driver scores 100 points, 2nd scores 98, 3rd scores 96, and the scores decreases by two through the running order. If your driver does not qualify for the Feature, they are awarded 40 points. The combined score of your lineup is your score for the event.

DirtDraft also has two leaderboards. One for the specific event and one for the series. The series leaderboards run the entire season and your combined score across every event is calculated in this score.

The rewards for the player's performance are based on DirtDraft Points. In the "free to play" contests, which generally have the most participants, the winning player/lineup is award 800 DirtDraft Points. The 100th best player/lineup is award 25 points. Anyone finishing outside of the top 100 receives 5 points.

These points can be used in a couple different ways. One way is to redeem your points for prizes. These prizes include a pack of 4 T-Shirts from various drivers, series, events, etc., Pit Passes to partnered series, and even a 1 month subscription to FloRacing. Another way to use accrued points, is to use them as a Buy-In to "higher stakes" contests. For most events, there is a "free to play,", a 50 Point buy-in, and 250 Point buy-in contest. These buy-in contests generally have fewer participants, but often have a higher reward for the winning player.

What's with the quotation marks?
"Free to play?" Both MRP and DirtDraft are subscription services. Both provide for a monthly and yearly subscription. Once you have the subscription, both MRP and DirtDraft have free contests, but those contests are stuck behind the paywall. With the MRP subscription, you also get access to driver lineups and live timing and scoring. With DirtDraft, you only gain access to their #FantasyDirt platform.

My Preference
DirtDraft is my preferred platform and the platform that I think has the best path to broad acceptance in the dirt racing community. The contests are easily understood and accessible. The scoring and prizing is simple and straightforward. Also, your ability to confidently choose your lineup isn't dependent on having familiarity with every driver in every class at the event. Personally, I participate in every DirtDraft event. It is my clear winner.

All that being said, I still think MRP has a part to play in the #FantasyDirt space, especially if you are at the track. It creates additional fan engagement and can make even the 20 lap Hornet Feature a little exciting. I also like to let my girlfriend pick a few classes so we can giggle at how poorly she does. Every time I am at the track, I participate in MRP #FantasyDirt.

Thanks for reading. If you have anything you think I should add or just wanna shoot the breeze about #FantasyDirt, hit me up on Twitter.