IROC Set to Return, Sort Of

Mike Schlee
by Mike Schlee

Is the iconic International Race of Champions (IROC) series coming back? Maybe. A press release was put out stating that a joint venture has acquired the rights to the IROC name with plans to resurrect the brand. The full press release reads as follows:

“IROC Holdings LLC (IROC Holdings), a joint venture company created by NASCAR Hall of Fame member Ray Evernham and former NASCAR Cup Team Owner and venture capitalist Rob Kauffman, announced the formation of the joint venture and the acquisition of the rights to the IROC brand. Known as IROC (International Race of Champions), a series of races was held annually from 1973 to 2006. IROC brought together the greatest drivers from all forms of motorsport to compete against each other in iconic cars on historic tracks. Although the annual events ended in 2006, the legacy and recognition of the IROC brand has continued throughout the years. IROC Holdings plans to bring the historic brand back to life.

IROC Holdings has been formed to house the business operations with the intent to have an IROC racing event in 2024 with historic IROC race cars while exploring future opportunities. The company will initially be based in Mooresville, N.C."

IROC’s Heyday

For those unfamiliar with the IROC series, it was a highlight for many racing fans as stars from different racing disciplines, like Indy, NASCAR, and road racing, would compete head-to-head in a set of identical cars.

In its inaugural 1974 season, IROC used Porsche 911 RSR's before switching over to the Chevrolet Camaro. So popular was the series during the Camaro’s 12-year run, that a specific trim was created by Chevrolet, called the Camaro IROC-Z. In 1990 the series switched to the Dodge Daytona, although it was in appearance only as the race car was not anything like the road car. The series would also see the Dodge Avenger and Pontiac Trans Am be used.

What Does the Future Hold?

Before we all get too excited about the full-blown IROC series returning, reading the press release carefully, it appears the initial plans for the IROC brand is just that, as a brand. Whether this means for merchandise, marketing, or something else is unknown currently.

That stated, the line “the intent to have an IROC racing event in 2024 with historic IROC race cars” has us VERY intrigued. Could there be a race with current and/or past racing superstars in vintage ‘80s Camaro’s or ‘90s Daytona’s? If so, we’re in!

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Mike Schlee
Mike Schlee

A 20+ year industry veteran, Mike rejoins the AutoGuide team as the Managing Editor. He started his career at a young age working at dealerships, car rentals, and used car advertisers. He then found his true passion, automotive writing. After contributing to multiple websites for several years, he spent the next six years working at the head office of an automotive OEM, before returning back to the field he loves. He is a member of the Automobile Journalists Association of Canada (AJAC), and Midwest Automotive Media Association (MAMA). He's the recipient of a feature writing of the year award and multiple video of the year awards.

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 1 comment
  • David David on Jan 09, 2024

    This would be fun, but I pray they don't make this an EV series. I'd rather here the muffled sound of a turbocharged 4 cylinder than the whoosh of an electric thing.