OLYMPIC ESPORTS SERIES 2023 Motor Sport Event Coming to Gran Turismo 7!
The International Olympic Committee (IOC), Fédération Internationale de l’Automobile (FIA), and Polyphony Digital Inc. have announced that Gran Turismo 7 will be used as the platform for the OLYMPIC ESPORTS SERIES 2023 Motor Sport Event. An online time trial will begin in mid-April (eligibility criteria to be announced at a later date.) The fastest from the time trial will be invited to compete at the Finals, which will be live at the first-ever Olympic Esports Week on 22-25 June 2023 in Singapore.
The Olympic Esports Series 2023 is a global virtual and simulated sports competition, created by the IOC, and in collaboration with International Federations (IFs) and game publishers. In addition to motorsport, a wide range of other sports will be included.
“Participation of Gran Turismo in the Olympic Esports Series is something we are very happy with and it is great for fans of GT and the community,” explained Gran Turismo Series Producer Kazunori Yamauchi at an event held at the IOC headquarters in Lausanne. “What we’re seeing here is something that for us began in 2008 with the GT Academy programme, when we were trying to go from the virtual to the real, and we saw the virtual and the real as two distinct things. Ten years on and we are seeing sports changing to be a continuous experience from the virtual to the real, and the OES marks a step change in that process. The athletes will be one in the same, and they will have the experience in their careers to move seamlessly between the virtual and real. Sport has been evolving for 100 years and this is the latest development in that evolution.”
For Robert Reid, the FIA Deputy President for Sport, the Olympic Esports Series 2023 Motor Sport Event is a valuable collaboration on a number of fronts. “I am delighted that the FIA is joining forces for the second time in a row with the IOC and Gran Turismo for this innovative Esports event,” he said. “We've committed to double the participation in motorsport, and the Olympic Esports Series aligns perfectly with our strategy to extend the appeal of our wonderful sport to fresh audiences. Esports promotes mass participation by removing most of the traditional barriers to entry and is also a great display of equality, diversity and inclusivity."
The Olympic Esports Series 2023 will culminate for the first time in the Olympic Esports Finals 2023, a live, in-person event. Taking place at Singapore’s Suntec Centre on 22–25 June, this event will be one of the highlights of the recently announced Olympic Esports Week 2023.
Speaking about the importance of the Olympic Esports Series, Kit McConnell, the IOC’s Director of Sport, said: “The Olympic Movement brings people together in peaceful competition. The Olympic Esports Series 2023 is a continuation of that, with the ambition of creating more spaces to play for both players and fans of elite competition. We look forward to witnessing some of the world’s best compete on the global stage, as well as exploring together, shared opportunities and lessons - across health and wellbeing, training and innovation”.
Coming together in Singapore for the unique competition, players will compete in front of fans for the prestigious title of Olympic Esports Series winner. The thrilling finale will be streamed globally on olympics.com and social channels.
Gran Turismo was also represented in the Olympic Virtual Series in 2021 when Valerio Gallo of Italy won the title in an online event.