If you’re looking for a new listen while carrying out mundane tasks or you’d like to learn more about sim racing and racing games, here are our podcast recommendations.
Here at Traxion.GG we love a good podcast – something to listen to while emptying the bins, walking the dog or commuting to the office.
In recent years, the number of dedicated sim racing – and/or racing game and racing esports – podcasts has grown exponentially.
In the USA, 73 per cent of the population aged over 12 have listened to online audio in the last month while in Canada 38 per cent of adults have listened to a podcast in the last year. The nation of Sweden consumes the most podcasts, ahead of Ireland and Brazil.
There’s no doubt that the COVID-19 pandemic, especially in 2020, opened the floodgates for the genre. While not every new podcast launch then has continued, it’s still a net gain overall, with more interviews, insights and entertainment available than ever before.
While we have our own podcast – which we break down into seasons, with the fifth starting this week – across the team we listen to every racing game or sim racing-related podcast there is as our pastime regardless.
So, with that in mind, and in no particular order, here are eight podcasts we recommend you listen to, because we do too.
Don’t forget, the Traxion Podcast
Before we dive in…
Just to be clear, we aren’t including ourselves on a ‘best of’ list. But, after you’ve followed or subscribed to the shows mentioned above, don’t forget that the Traxion Podcast exists, where we talk about racing games, sim racing and racing esports with some of the industry’s leading lights.
Sim Sundays by Grid Finder
Grid Finder – the online sim racing community search tool – has recently started its own podcast, which first starts out as a live stream on YouTube, and is then later released as an audio listen across all major podcast platforms.
It revolves around inviting a guest to race live and with the community. Either side of the race, Thomas Stapley-Bunten and Chris Honniball discuss sim racing, be that the interviewee’s history, content creation tips, where the future of the genre is headed and favourite competition platforms.
With the unique racing aspect, Grid Finder has successfully found a new, engaging, format that breaks the mould, while simultaneously appealing to those who simply like listening to informative conversations while vacuuming.
Well, that’s when we listen to podcasts anyway, let us know in the comments below when you pop on a pod…
Ever wanted to listen to a show about the obscure driving game Runabout? How about a deep dive into the Dreamcast and original Xbox racer Sega GT 2002? Or a positive take on Project CARS 3?
No? You should.
Time Extend is a racing game podcast, and part of the joy of listening is discovering a classic title that you’ve perhaps never heard of, or an alternative take on something the internet comment section loves to lambast.
Episodes aren’t on a regular basis, but when they arrive, they are well-researched and enlightening. It’s a rare treat to be notified when a new instalment is ready for listening.
Also, its Twitter feed is a meme monster for driving titles.
The Cool Down Podcast
Our first entry that isn’t strictly racing game or sim racing-focused – and new episodes since March 2022 look to be absent – but The Cool Down motorsport podcast by Tom McCluskey is a thoroughly entertaining listen.
Over the 31-episode run, plenty of folks from the virtual world have guested, and Tommo’s alacrity shines through to deliver a more personable approach often missing elsewhere. He may be busy working on his impeccably produced live YouTube Formula 1 content and new ventures F1 Talking Points and The Last Lap, but a return to some Cool Down recording wouldn’t go amiss.
Recommend episodes for sim racers include Outside Xbox and Top Gear’s Mike Channell, Autosport’s Formula 1 Reporter Luke Smith, double F1 Esports champion Jarno Opmeer plus F1 game content creators Benjamin Daly aka Tiametmarduk and Aarav Amin aka Arrava.
- Apple Podcasts
- Google Podcasts
VCO Esports Studio
The Virtual Competition Organisation is a leading racing esports event coordinator and producer. Alongside live-streamed professional-level competitions, it also creates the virtual racing magazine, SEND IT, with a second issue due before the end of the year and the Simmy Awards.
On its YouTube channel and major podcast platforms, it has the ‘Esports Studio’, where motorsport journalists and commentator Ben Constanduros interviews at length someone from the world of competitive online racing – be that drivers, team members or even VCO CEO Florian Haasper.
There are 76 episodes at the time of writing, including discussions with some of the world’s greatest racing esports drivers, from Formula Pro Series champion Bono Huis to Porsche works motorsport driver Matt Campbell, commentator Lewis McGlade and even 2013 Indianapolis 500 winner Tony Kanaan.
There is a rotating squad of four co-hosts, two based in America and two in Europe, and it’s this mix of different racing and gaming interests that creates such compelling listening.
Ben Williams, Louis Satterlee, Jordan Groves and Matt Hunter predominately conversate that week’s latest sim racing and esports news, so this is an excellent way of keeping up to speed. But it’s the pontification as to what it could mean for the future of the subgenre and debates that will keep you listening.
Power Drifting: The Rally Game Podcast
The world needs more rally games, and aside from the official WRC titles, there doesn’t seem to be much around.
Power Drifting covered the big releases in the genre, sure, but also the niche indie titles that are cruelly overlooked. Strong exponents of the Rush Rally series and Art of Rally, this is a cause we can get behind.
It also covers older hidden gems in-depth, such as Gravel, Mobil 1 Rally Championship and Top Gear Rally, each receiving a dedicated episode. Oh, and the dreadful Tommi Mäkinen Rally too. Someone had to go there…
Sadly, there hasn’t been a new episode since August last year, but the show’s Twitter account did state new episodes should be coming this year. There are only three months left of the year folks, fingers crossed…
Alex Goldschmidt’s Commentator’s Corner
A relative newcomer – its inaugural episode was published in November 2021 – motorsport media consultant Alex Goldschmidt plays host to those who, well commentate, as the name suggests.
That may be in the real world, or the virtual one, where the racing is very much real, even if the platform may not be. The main distinction being the latter are often referred to as casters.
Guests for far include Traxion.GG alumnus Justin Sutton, Overtake.GG’s Produktmanager René Buttler and George Morgan, who is known for his PSGL commentary and has now made the jump to Formula Regional European Championship and International GT Open.
The episodes live on Alex’s YouTube channel for now, with no audio-only podcast form yet. These are enlightening listens from a fresh perspective with sim racing crossover.
Talking Sims by Chris Haye
Sim racing YouTube content creator Chris Haye produced a limited run of podcasts in 2020, and while there haven’t been any new episodes since, they remain relevant today.
So, if you’ve not listened to them before, now’s the time to jump in, with all 14 still on podcast platforms for your enjoyment.
Insightful episodes include rFactor 2’s Community Manager and TCR Europe commentator Paul Jeffrey, YouTube content creators Random Callsign and Jardier plus now BS+COMPETITION esports driver Nils Naujoks.
If you’re a fan of iRacing, the iRacers Lounge Podcast is a weekly show that may be just for you. Mike Ellis is the usual host with other iRacers included on the show to talk about all things iRacing, in a casual setting, of course.
More than 345 episodes have been created since 2015. These shows can go on for a few hours, but it is because they are actually going over everything. Very thorough, and even better, if you can’t listen to the whole thing, they provide show notes with source material of what they’re talking about that day.
Common names you’ll see on the show include Ellis, Brian Maccubbin, Greg Hecktus, and from time to time, you’ll even hear the voice of eNASCAR for their eNASCAR round ups, that being Evan Posocco.
There are several others, such as the RaceDepartment Podcast, the PE Sim Racing Podcast and Level up! The Esports and Gaming Show, which covers every type of esports including racing. If we’ve missed some, we’re always open to recommendations, so please let us know in the comments below.