Fun game, but it lost some of my respect.
The online racing isn't real. You're either racing a previously recorded race, or a computer. I'm leaning towards computer.
If you doubt me, just try this. Next time you're at the line, don't hit the gas pedal. The girl won't drop the flag until you do. Leave it for how ever long you want, 5, 10, 30 minutes. Then come back and race as you normally would. Your opponent will race you like they hadn't just been waiting for 30 minutes.