Take a look behind the scenes of the iRacing dirt series with caster and broadcaster Chase Raudman.Have you ever heard a voice that sweeps you up like a net? How does it happen? Maybe the certain someone has a very soothing vocal tone. Or perhaps they are incredibly knowledgeable and can tell you things beyond your understanding. It’s these people who have a bright future in casting. Sometimes they even slide into sim racing.
Chase Raudman is a young broadcaster that has plenty of experience in dirt racing. He has casted multiple times and is nowadays a mainstay in the iRacing dirt series caster team. Together with co-commentator Justin Prince, he delivers excellent live coverage for the World of Outlaws NOS Energy Drink Sprint Car Series, for example. We had the chance to chat with him about his path to the virtual commentating chair.
OverTake: Hey Chase, thank you for doing this with us. How did your journey in motorsports start?
Chase Raudman: My dad used to be a lower division NASCAR champion. It wasn’t anything fancy, but he still raced a lot of later known personalities.
Chase Raudman: So, I got into motorsports through him. I didn’t race until 2012 when I started on dirt. I quickly noticed I wasn’t going to be the next big thing, so I moved on. But my brother and a whole bunch of my friends continued to race. That is why I was still involved in racing. Later, I would start doing PR for the tracks, which got me into this part of the motorsports world.
OverTake: Not only were you a real-life racer, but you have also been on iRacing for a long time. How did you get into it?
Chase Raudman: I’m closing in on my tenth year playing it. My cousin had iRacing before I knew of it and that was when I was 15. He showed me everything about the game, which was way before the dirt stuff. I said to myself: “This looks kind of cool,” and when he sold his equipment, I bought it for crazy cheap. Ever since then, I’m on iRacing. It is crazy to think I’m in the top-100 in terms of all-time wins. That shows you how much time I’ve spent on here.
OverTake: Wow, that’s impressive. Did you ever consider going pro?
Chase Raudman: I did indeed. If I recall correctly, it was in 2013 when I attempted to go pro. I tried qualifying for the then pro series for eNASCAR on iRacing. But it wasn’t like it is now. Teams dropped you and moved on very quickly. Fast forward a few years later and I made it to the Dirt Oval Pro Series. It was the first year iRacing had it. But although I succeeded in qualifying, I gave up on my pro license about a week after I got it. The competition was just too stiff.
OverTake: And how did that all transition into you becomming a caster?
Chase Raudman: It all began after I qualified for the pro series. iRacing hosted its own Chili Bowl, which is the biggest racing event in America. The guy who made the announcement on the iRacing forums was the commentator. So I replied, basically applying in a comment. So that’s how I started, and funnily enough, my co-commentator was Justin Prince, who I do the dirt series with today.
OverTake: And did you become their full-time dirt guy right away?
Chase Raudman: No. A couple of months later, the head commentator added me on Facebook and offered it to me. But at that time, I was torn between going pro and casting. So I hesitated. But after I came to the realization that I wouldn’t beat the top guys on track, I chose what I was really good at. I feel like it’s come full circle. Nowadays, these drivers make $10,000 sitting in their underwear, and I get to enjoy fantastic racing and casting it.
I have definitely had my fair share of dealing out a commentators curse over the past few years but last night’s @WorldofOutlaws Pro Series race takes it to a whole new level😂@iRacing could this be taken into consideration for the next “Not Top 10 Highlights” video? pic.twitter.com/C7oOh1ANWe— Chase Raudman (@Chase_Raudman2) April 28, 2020
OverTake: Did any experience in casting stick out to you?
Chase Raudman: One of the most insane things was that after I casted all those events, once coronavirus hit and all the racing shut down in America, they had this Pro Invitational on iRacing for the World of Outlaws drivers. The crazy thing is they asked me to co-commentate with Johnny Gibson. He is a legend in the casting scene and will go down as one of the all-time greats when it comes to the dirt scene. He commentates the real-life World of Outlaws. But since he knew basically nothing about the game, it was me teaching him something about the camera and spectator mode. It was unreal. We did around ten to twelve races in total, and it was something very special for an aspiring caster like me. It’s mad to think where it all went. Also the same Pro Invitational that I casted with Johnny Gibson basically got me the gig at the real World of Outlaws as a pit reporter.
OverTake: How do you prepare before you cast an event?
Chase Raudman: Last year I started casting the iRacing World of Outlaws Late Model Pro Series and realized it was better than the Sprint Car Pro Series. And that comes from a sprint car guy. For this year, I was really paying attention when the guys would run. I would watch replays and watch them live. I wanted to look out who was fast and who was a contender this year. As far as past casts, I would watch VODs so I can see what we may have missed. Maybe someone wrecked and we completely cut the camera there. And then I make a note in my head.
OverTake: Which improvements would you like to see for esports racing broadcasts in the future?
Chase Raudman: I would love to do extra segments, where we show the last real race that happened at that track at the start of every event. From my experience, many people who watch sim racing don’t even watch the real-life stuff, so that could really connect both worlds. I think the possibilities would be plenty. You could also interview players beforehand and have them on Skype as they do in eNASCAR.
OverTake: What are your wishes for dirt racing on iRacing?
Chase Raudman: If I was their head dirt racing guy, I would work on their content a lot. Like I said, iRacing is mainly known for its road course and pavement oval racing. They’re not known for their dirt stuff, and they don’t know a lot about it, but it has so much potential. If I could come in and be their dirt guy to scan all the tracks, that would be awesome. I would love to be like: “Hey, this track does this at this time”. I feel like there is so much money to be made there. Now they only have around ten racetracks for dirt racing on iRacing. I would almost give up announcing or commentating if I were the head guy for dirt on iRacing.
OverTake: What would be your advice to aspiring casters?
Chase Raudman: I would like to think you have to be very knowledgeable to cast a whole series. I feel like no matter what you commentate on, you have to be knowledgeable about it. Regardless if it’s a lawnmower race or touring cars. And no doubt you have to have a good cadence and speak properly because otherwise, there will be many very awkward pauses.
If you want to know more about Chase Raudman follow him on his social media: