"Gran Turismo Sport Unveiling Event" Report
The much-anticipated launch of Gran Turismo Sport was held on May 19 and 20 at the Copper Box Arena inside Queen Elizabeth Park in London, U.K. The “Gran Tuismo Sport Unveiling Event” marked the first time the public was able to experience the game first hand.
The cars scheduled to be on display are lined up the day before the event.
At the front entrance of the Copper Box Arena, the attendees are greeted by the likes of the Nissan 370Z from the GT Academy and the race car competing in the 24 Hours of Nurburbring, preparing them for what’s to come when they step inside.
The scene inside the arena was like an auto show from the future, as several Vision Gran Turismo cars graced the floor with their artistic, head-turning body styles.
These were Vision Gran Turismo cars that were displayed at the venue.
Lucas Ordóñez, the first GT Academy champion, took center stage on this day, but also present were the 2015 GT Academy winners, shown here in front of the Nissan Concept 2020 Vision Gran Turismo.
The event began sharply at 3 p.m. on May 19, with a guest list that not only included the public, but representatives from the various automobile manufacturers, officials from the Fédération Internationale de l'Automobile (FIA), respected journalists and celebrities. Thirty minutes later, GT series Producer Kazunori Yamauchi addressed the attendees, introducing the new game and saying that he intended to “change the boundaries of race games today.”
The main event on this day was the “FIA Gran Turismo Championships Pre-Season Test.” This event, a precursor to the “FIA Certified Gran Turismo Championships,” organized by the FIA and Gran Turismo, pitted the top 32 GT players from Europe, the U.S. and Japan, against each other in intense racing battles. During Yamauchi’s presentation, they gathered backstage for a driver’s briefing session.
The contests were divided into two categories: the Nations Cup, where each driver represented his or her own country, and the Manufacturers Cup, where drivers battled for the maker of their race cars. While both events featured intense competition, it was the Japanese who shone on this particular day.
The Japanese contestants dominated in qualifying for the Nations Cup, with Takuya Takahashi, the former Japanese representative for GT Academy, taking the top honor. The Manufacturers Cup was contested by two-man race teams, and the pair driving for Renault—Yusuke Tomibayashi (Japan) and Carlos Martinez (Spain)—took the checker in a Renault Sport R.S.01 GT3. Both the Nations Cup and Manufacturers Cup were thrilling as it not only provided excitement for the drivers but for the spectators as well.
Click on the link below to watch scenes from the FIA Gran Turismo Championship Pre-Season Test.
On May 20, the second day of the event, the public was invited to participate in the exhibition matches. The turnout was huge, and the atmosphere was electric. There were seven races planned on this day, but in the last race of the day, the race was so close—the Japanese drivers squeaked out a win over the U.S. and British teams—that the crowd demanded a rematch! Therefore, an eighth race was quickly organized. In the end it didn’t matter who won or lost; what was important was how the Nations Cup brought people together as they cheered for their home countries.
On the show floor, long lines formed at the racing pods with visitors anxious to get their first taste of the new Gran Turismo game, while outside, people were offered a real-world taste of high-performance cars taken to their extreme limits, as professional drivers took lucky guests for rides in their favorite vehicle. With the opportunity of sampling both real and virtual high-performance driving, everyone at the event walked away with experiences they'll not soon forget.
This event marked the countdown to the release of Gran Turismo Sport. Stay tuned for more updates on the new Gran Turismo title in the weeks to come.
Please see the related links at the bottom of this page for more information regarding Gran Turismo Sport. A detailed report of the FIA Gran Turismo Championship Pre-Season Test is also provided in "Gran Turismo Sport Live".