Betting on eRacing: The Evolutionary Shift in Motorsport Wagering

Throughout the development of video games, racing titles have always been popular. Some of the most famous games of all time, such as Outrun, Burnout, Forza Horizon and Gran Turismo, have been based on racing and racing games are a major segment of the modern gaming sector.

Yet, whereas once, racing and racing games were completely separate entities, in recent years there has been a blurring of the distinction between competitive racing and video games, represented most notably by the movie Gran Turismo, based on the true story of an esports racing driver who made the crossover into real world car racing.

The eRacing world now features hundreds of competitors around the world chasing significant prizes, and the sport of eRacing has attracted the attention of many racing fans, including racing bettors. Sports bettors who are more used to checking out F1 betting sites may also be following the latest news in the eRacing sector, and studying the odds. So how has this come about?

The Rise of eRacing

While esports began to take off in the 2000s, for a long time, racing games were not considered suitable as a competitive sport. That began to change as technology and the ingenuity of game developers began to make it driving games that were incredibly lifelike.

In 2016, Forza Motorsport launched the Forza Racing Championship, the first major esports racing competition. Anyone who owned a copy of the Forza Racing game was able to register, and from these entries, teams were eventually formed and a World Championship created.

The developer of the Gran Turismo franchise followed suit and went one better by having their competition registered by the FIA, and they were followed by the launch of the Formula 1 esports series, based on the Formula 1 game developed by Codemasters.

In 2023, there are many esport racing games, covering all the most popular forms of racing, from NASCAR to speedway. Some of the games, such as the online-only iRacing, allow for a wide variety of racing types, while others are specialist games. Here are some of the most popular:


Type of Racing


Various cars

Gran Turismo

Various cars

Formula 1



All forms of motorsport


All forms of motorsport




Various cars

Assetta Corsa

Various cars

Betting on eRacing

While the majority of wagering on motorsport is still done on traditional sports and competitions, such as NASCAR and Formula One, there is a growing betting scene around esports racing and bookmakers are scrambling to offer competitive markets.

One of the advantages for bookmakers of motorsport esports is that it is a lot easier to compile markets for these events, which are almost always modelled on real world races. This means that motorsport bettors can also find it easy to switch to esports racing betting as many of the markets that they will be betting on are the same:

  • Race winner
  • Competition winner
  • Fastest lap
  • Podium finish
  • Constructors championship
  • Finishing order
  • Qualification betting

Most interesting of all is that there is a high degree of crossover in terms of skills required to succeed at real world racing and esports racing. Formula One drivers, for instance, can practice on simulators, while the best esports racing drivers can graduate to competitions such as NASCAR.

And, as the global eRacing market continues to expand, bookmakers will have to make more markets available for dedicated eRacing fans to bet on.

The Future of eMotorsport Betting

Esports have often been criticized by those who follow traditional sports as not being ‘real sports’. This has always been an unfair criticism and it is particularly inaccurate when it comes to eRacing, where top performers have shown that they can succeed in real racing cars.

The fact that eRacing events can be staged in all conditions and all circumstances, and without most of the environmental impact of real racing makes these events far more reliable for fans and bettors than traditional outdoor racing competitions. This reliability and the easy crossover between the skills needed to bet on real world and digital racing means that eRacing and the eRacing betting industry will continue to expand for many years to come.