One step closer to transforming a GT5™ expert into a real life racing driver
GT Academy 2011 is the Sony Computer Entertainment Europe (SCEE) and Nissan talent-spotting initiative that uses the Gran Turismo®5 game to unearth a real racing driver.
This year’s European GT Academy ran across 10 countries, with over 90,000 hopefuls entering the time trial phase of the competition. The leading GT5 gamers qualified for Territory Finals that were staged in Germany, France, Italy, Netherlands, Spain and the UK.
During each Territory Final the PlayStation® young guns had to face a series of demanding gaming challenges, designed to put their racing skills on GT5™ to the test. Marking a first for GT Academy, the leading pack of competitors were also put through a series of physical contests, media interviews and real life driving tests in the muscular Nissan 370Zs. For a taste of the drama and excitement of GT Academy 2011, please click on the series of Territory Final videos that are featured on this page.
The details and results for each Territory Final were as follows:
Austria & Germany Territory Final:
Dates: 6 & 7 May
Location: Red Bull Hangar-7, Austria
Winners: Sascha Meyenborg, aged 32 (German) & Alexander Welke, aged 18 (German)
Ireland & UK Territory Final:
Dates: 9 & 10 May
Location: Brands Hatch circuit
Winners: Jann Mardenborough, aged 20 (UK) & James Hudson, aged 29 (UK)
Netherlands Territory Final:
Dates: 11 & 12 May
Location: Rosmalen Proving Ground
Winners: Thomas Arends, aged 24 & Edwin Bos, aged 20
French and Switzerland Territory Final:
Dates: 14 & 15 May
Location: Paul Ricard, Le Castellet circuit
Winners: Thibault Lacombe, aged 29 (France) & Bastien Bartsch, aged 26 (France)
Italian National Final Territory Final:
Dates: 14 & 15 May
Location: RDS Radio & Nissan Italy HQ, Rome
Winners: Federico Pinna aged 25 & Danilo Bordino, aged 27
Spain & Portugal Territory Final:
Dates: 21 & 22 May
Location: Barcelona Motor Show
Winners: Bruno Ferreira, aged 26 (Portugal) & Carlos Murillo, aged 24 (Spain)
With the National Finals from around Europe complete, 2011 GT Academy now reaches the international ‘Race Camp’ phase.
The curtain raiser for the international GT Academy ‘Race Camp’ will take place at the 2011 Le Mans 24 Hour race. The 12 European finalists will all be hoping to follow in the footsteps of Lucas Ordoñez, the winner of the first instalment of GT Academy in 2008. The Spanish student graduated from his PlayStation®3 system to commence his racing career at the Dubai 24 Hours. Three years later and Lucas will line up to compete in one of the greatest races of all – the Le Mans 24 Hours - behind the wheel of the Signatech Nissan LMP2 Prototype.
After the Le Mans activities, the competitors will head to Silverstone Circuit for the final four-days of ‘Race Camp’. The stakes are high at Silverstone. The 2011 GT Academy champion will immediately move into a comprehensive driver development programme before racing at the Dubai International 24 Hour race in January 2012, in a full race-spec Nissan 370Z GT4 car.