For those of you who dont know what Sim Racing System (or SRS for short) is, SRS is an app that can be installed into both Raceroom and Assetto Corsa. The app allows you to sign up for races with other people who have downloaded SRS and run multiplayer races, that are both clean and ranked. It's basically iRacing's ranking system but for Assetto Corsa, and did I mention its completely free? No payment to download the app, no subscription to race with the app, easily available ranked and clean racing, too good to be true right? Lets have a closer look.
About Sim Racing System
Sim Racing System operates 24/7, so people in all time zones can race, and there are many series to choose from too. The series change every month and the tracks change more frequently, allowing for variation in what you race whilst not making you practice for a new track or series every day like most public multiplayer racing. To get set up on Sim Racing System all you need is a copy of the title you intend to race on and an account with Sim Racing System.
So how does the racing compare to more premium services like iRacing? For the most part well! There is the usual turn 1 bumping but no matter what sim you race on it will always be the same. The racing I have experienced so far has been quite respectful, more bumping and barging than iRacing but for a free service it is fantastic. There is a protest system on the forums for drivers to use if they feel someone has broken the rules or crashed intentionally, which seems to be effective as I've rarely raced any drivers like this.
Now onto the downsides of this service, my main gripe with SRS is the penalty system, simply put, it's awful. Slightly cutting certain parts of the track and gaining no more than half a second will land you a 10 second penalty or even more, and any acceleration whilst serving the penalty will instantly reset it what it was before. An example of this is a race I did at the Nurburgring GP circuit, leading the race I cut the chicane a little bit and end up with a 10 second penalty, I drop down half of the field as I'm serving it and start accelerating when the timer says 0, only for it to give me the 10 second penalty back as the penalty can sit on 0 seconds for up to 5 seconds and you cannot accelerate during this time without being given the penalty again. Another issue with the penalty system are the starts of races, if you but the car in first gear and roll just a tiny bit backwards or forwards from your starting box you get a penalty, forcing you to start in neutral and shift to first as the lights go out to ensure that you don't get a penalty. Another issue with SRS is crashing, I may have praised how clean it was earlier, however the services is free, which means anyone can sign up, and this has lead to a few people signing up just to crash people. I chose not to mention this earlier as this has only ever happened once to me personally and I don't think it is fair to put this down to SRS as they will most likely be banned as soon as they are caught. Finally there is the lack of progression, whilst some races do require a certain rating I think the whole progression system is poor. There is no starting in slower cars and working your way up like iRacing and the rookie MX-5s all the way up to the Formula 1 cars, you can just jump in a Formula 1 car and race, which for those new to online racing is probably not a good idea, having people who cant handle a car like this racing with it online will never end well.
Despite the negatives Sim Racing System is a brilliant tool and great for those that would like a cheaper alternative to iRacing, and would like some clean online racing that is also ranked. I personally think that is worth a download even if it is just to try, because you may get hooked. A great way of getting fun racing for free!