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Tuesday 17th April 2012

GT Academy 2012: starter's orders

Another chance to realise your virtual to reality ambitions as GT Academy kicks off a new season



The story of how Gran Turismo, and games like it, has influenced a generation of car geeks both virtual and real will have to wait for another day but gamers with ambitions of a racing in the real world have another chance to join the Nissan supported GT Academy.

Eyes on the prize and all that...
Eyes on the prize and all that...
Now in its fourth year, the established GT Academy format starts with an online time attack challenge on a special Gran Turismo 5 stage open to anyone with a PS3 and the competitive urge to spend hours honing lap times down in the hope of getting a place at the national final. The top six from each of these will fight for a place at the GT Academy Race Camp at Silverstone, graduating from games console to real cars and, for the first time, each getting at least one race. The overall winner will then be groomed for an international racing debut at the Dubai 24 Hour in January 2013.

All four previous winners have successfully proven themselves as genuinely quick race drivers in the real world too, original winner Lucas Ordonez now driving an LMP2 car in the Euro Le Mans series and at the 24-hour race with others - including Brit Jann Mardenborough (centre, above flanked by Ordonez and Jordan Tresson) who won last year's GT Academy - now racing Nissans in various GT championships.

The online challenge - incorporating an eight-stage qualification process - goes live on May 1 and runs until June 24. Expect fierce competition, if not from PistonHeads following our previous attempt to pit virtual racing skills against the real thing.

Dan Trent
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TomMc1990

Original Poster:

37 posts

32 months

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Tuesday 17th April 2012 quote quote all
Damn, wish I weren't going to work in Ibiza for 5 months now, I would have nailed this!

Hoygo

724 posts

48 months

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Tuesday 17th April 2012 quote quote all
Best i did in GT Academy was the 102 th place from 99999999 other players,only 0,3 sec difference from the 1st place,only with a normal Ps3 controller,couldn't been arsed more.

And i believe you can't register in it if you don't come 1,2,3 in GT5 first,no?

snorkel sucker

2,290 posts

90 months

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Tuesday 17th April 2012 quote quote all
I'll be giving this a go again. Wonder how it will compare to last years one... The format certainly looks different.

Having spent the last week having a bash at the current seasonal TT round Deep Forest, there really are some seriously quick guys out there! I managed to get to about 100th place overall (6th or 7th from UK/IRL rankings) but nowhere close to the outright leaders.


lgomgf

236 posts

75 months

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Tuesday 17th April 2012 quote quote all
TomMc1990 said:
Damn, wish I weren't going to work in Ibiza for 5 months now, I would have nailed this!
Are you being sarcastic or are you insane? exchange 5 months in Ibiza for some video game...

TomMc1990

Original Poster:

37 posts

32 months

[news] 
Tuesday 17th April 2012 quote quote all
TomMc1990 said:
lgomgf said:
TomMc1990 said:
Damn, wish I weren't going to work in Ibiza for 5 months now, I would have nailed this!
Are you being sarcastic or are you insane? exchange 5 months in Ibiza for some video game...
I was being sarcastic, but deep down I really want to have a go...

Always next year!
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El Shafto

104 posts

32 months

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Tuesday 17th April 2012 quote quote all
Why is this the first I've heard of this?!?!?!?! Might be time to sell the car and live off the money for 2 months while I do nothing but GT for 10 hours a day....

zebedee

4,302 posts

165 months

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Tuesday 17th April 2012 quote quote all
El Shafto said:
Why is this the first I've heard of this?!?!?!?! Might be time to sell the car and live off the money for 2 months while I do nothing but GT for 10 hours a day....
Dunno, you can't follow sportscar racing though, that's for sure!

MCBrowncoat

102 posts

33 months

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Tuesday 17th April 2012 quote quote all
Hoygo said:
Best i did in GT Academy was the 102 th place from 99999999 other players,only 0,3 sec difference from the 1st place,only with a normal Ps3 controller,couldn't been arsed more.

And i believe you can't register in it if you don't come 1,2,3 in GT5 first,no?
Are you serious?! That's pretty good, I've always considered myself to be a dab hand at GT having owned all of them and played them...a lot. I was unbeaten throughout university, yet I can't manage to get into the top 15-20k (OK, so, once I've got gold I don't bother anymore, but still...) once a TT's been up for a couple of days.

Some of the times people get on those TT's are insane. Way too much time on their hands. By the time I'm that good I could've got that good at the real thing....

zebedee

4,302 posts

165 months

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Tuesday 17th April 2012 quote quote all
MCBrowncoat said:
Are you serious?! That's pretty good, I've always considered myself to be a dab hand at GT having owned all of them and played them...a lot. I was unbeaten throughout university, yet I can't manage to get into the top 15-20k (OK, so, once I've got gold I don't bother anymore, but still...) once a TT's been up for a couple of days.

Some of the times people get on those TT's are insane. Way too much time on their hands. By the time I'm that good I could've got that good at the real thing....
Your theory falls down when you look at the cost difference! Few quid on electricity versus tens or hundreds of thousands of pounds on the real thing. I bet Mr Ordonez is pretty pleased with how we chose to spend his evenings as he now has a lifestyle that he couldn't even have dreamed of.

I do believe that there will be people half a second or more off the top time who would make better all-round drivers in the end and a large part of it must be to do with the coaching and experience they get afterwards, but it is such a great initiative and I look forward to seeing who the next generation are that come through and to see what is next for Messrs Tresson and Mardenborough who still need to break the big time (but are doing pretty well. Have I missed a past winner too?

MCBrowncoat

102 posts

33 months

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Tuesday 17th April 2012 quote quote all
zebedee said:
MCBrowncoat said:
Are you serious?! That's pretty good, I've always considered myself to be a dab hand at GT having owned all of them and played them...a lot. I was unbeaten throughout university, yet I can't manage to get into the top 15-20k (OK, so, once I've got gold I don't bother anymore, but still...) once a TT's been up for a couple of days.

Some of the times people get on those TT's are insane. Way too much time on their hands. By the time I'm that good I could've got that good at the real thing....
Your theory falls down when you look at the cost difference! Few quid on electricity versus tens or hundreds of thousands of pounds on the real thing.
.....Yep. Tongue in cheek? Irony? No?

snorkel sucker

2,290 posts

90 months

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Tuesday 17th April 2012 quote quote all
zebedee said:
MCBrowncoat said:
Some of the times people get on those TT's are insane. Way too much time on their hands. By the time I'm that good I could've got that good at the real thing....
I do believe that there will be people half a second or more off the top time who would make better all-round drivers in the end and a large part of it must be to do with the coaching and experience they get afterwards, but it is such a great initiative and I look forward to seeing who the next generation are that come through and to see what is next for Messrs Tresson and Mardenborough who still need to break the big time (but are doing pretty well. Have I missed a past winner too?
The thing with the TTs are that, to get into the higher ranked places, you need to really get the car setup correctly. I don't often bother chasing the top times, but I've had a real bash at the Deep Forest seasonal this past week. I struggled to get a decent time to start with, but one of the faster guys on GTPlanet posted up his tune for the R8 everyone was using, and I managed to get as high up as top 60. I've slipped down a bit now to more like 100, but a good time can be done. Getting into the top 50 though is very very tough - you only have to watch the ghosts of some of the top 10 guys to see that they really know how to drive - you can seen it in the way they use a slightly different line into some corners (have a read of "driving on the edge")

I think the point about all round drivers is a good one, and one which looks like it is being addressed this time out with the academy. More trials, rather than on circuit on which to set your best time. You won't be able to just sit and do lap after lap, so you'll have less time to "learn" each challenge. Replicates real life a bit better I think; balancing racing with other things.

DanDC5

8,937 posts

54 months

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Tuesday 17th April 2012 quote quote all
MCBrowncoat said:
Are you serious?! That's pretty good, I've always considered myself to be a dab hand at GT having owned all of them and played them...a lot. I was unbeaten throughout university, yet I can't manage to get into the top 15-20k (OK, so, once I've got gold I don't bother anymore, but still...) once a TT's been up for a couple of days.

Some of the times people get on those TT's are insane. Way too much time on their hands. By the time I'm that good I could've got that good at the real thing....
Some of the quick times come from glitches on the corner cut lines, look at all the issues they had with the Merc challenge on the TG track. Other thing is there's some real oddball cars that people use to set the quick laps. I always look at what cars are used and try and find a good setup from someone on GT Planet. You can get within a second or so quickly then, then it's just grinding away to get quicker if you can be bothered.

MCBrowncoat

102 posts

33 months

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Tuesday 17th April 2012 quote quote all
Yeah, there was an annoying one a little while back and all the top times were done with an R390 GT1, and I didn't have one....frown

Shade

91 posts

55 months

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Tuesday 17th April 2012 quote quote all
DanDC5 said:
Some of the quick times come from glitches on the corner cut lines, look at all the issues they had with the Merc challenge on the TG track. Other thing is there's some real oddball cars that people use to set the quick laps. I always look at what cars are used and try and find a good setup from someone on GT Planet. You can get within a second or so quickly then, then it's just grinding away to get quicker if you can be bothered.
Not a problem for the Academy, everyone uses the same car.

Chris Stott

1,124 posts

84 months

[news] 
Wednesday 18th April 2012 quote quote all
All previous Academys have used a standard car with no tuning allowed other than driver aids (which, other than active steering, make you slower anyway).

I got to the UK finals in 2010, but to get there cost me almost all my free time for the 6 weeks the competition ran for... if I missed a day I dropped out of the top 20 and had to work double hard to get back in. In the end I had to go away for the final weekend and slipped back to 22nd, but I still made it through as a couple above me were either too young, didn't have licenses or already had a competition license.

The fianls was a great day out.

Sony put us up the the hotel next to Brands the night before. Then it was a day of racing (on GT5) along with passenger laps round Brands in the Nissan 370Z GT4. The 1st Academy winner, Lucas Ordonez, drove me round. A really nice guy, and proof that the Academy does work as he's done Le Mans in an LMP2, and is also running in the ALMS, IIRC.

One of my GT friends won the UK event (John, AKA 'Prudentbear') and went to Silverstone for the global final. However, unless you're young and super fit, you're never going to get the race seat.

Good luck to anyone who gives it a go this year.

mat777

5,673 posts

47 months

[news] 
Wednesday 18th April 2012 quote quote all
Shame... whilst I consider myself a fairly competitive track drive IRL due to a complete lack of fear and quite good feel for grip, I cant get into the top 50k or so on GT5 time trails as I just dont have hours to spend stringing perfect corners together to make a perfect lap, and I'm never millimetre perfect anyway as my track driving (in karts) is always based on offensive and defensive driving rather than outright pace and precision

zebedee

4,302 posts

165 months

[news] 
Thursday 19th April 2012 quote quote all
mat777 said:
Shame... whilst I consider myself a fairly competitive track drive IRL due to a complete lack of fear and quite good feel for grip, I cant get into the top 50k or so on GT5 time trails as I just dont have hours to spend stringing perfect corners together to make a perfect lap, and I'm never millimetre perfect anyway as my track driving (in karts) is always based on offensive and defensive driving rather than outright pace and precision
without pace and precision you won't get anywhere in professional racing. And what is 'offensive driving?!'

mat777

5,673 posts

47 months

[news] 
Thursday 19th April 2012 quote quote all
zebedee said:
mat777 said:
Shame... whilst I consider myself a fairly competitive track drive IRL due to a complete lack of fear and quite good feel for grip, I cant get into the top 50k or so on GT5 time trails as I just dont have hours to spend stringing perfect corners together to make a perfect lap, and I'm never millimetre perfect anyway as my track driving (in karts) is always based on offensive and defensive driving rather than outright pace and precision
without pace and precision you won't get anywhere in professional racing. And what is 'offensive driving?!'
I meant, when I have other cars on the track to pace myself with I can beat them easily but when its a time trial against myself I struggle to do lap after inch perfect lap.

Offensive driving - going for overtaking manouvers. The opposite of defensive driving where you try not to let others past

daVissi

245 posts

64 months

[news] 
Wednesday 9th May 2012 quote quote all

If Jardine International and Sony Playstation Europe are running it again don't bother, take it from me. Its quite easy for me to say because the shambles that they created luckily never affected me in terms of fairness only that the format of 1 lap or 3 laps is a lottery, you barely know your own hands before its finished. I did well one year more through lucking into having a clean run and no-one ramming me out like what happened to some of the other very strong competitors but everyone was seconds a lap slower than normal just about getting warmed up before a round finished.
There's a few potential racing drivers faster than the ones we've ended up with though that unfairly lost out due to the amateur PR event style. They even let the journalists race the Nissans around the track but not the actual competitors, that being the one realistic element opportunity wasted!

Wait for someone else to do something is my advice. Just do the TT for fun though since Sony are allergic to doing non-tuning events.



Edited by daVissi on Wednesday 9th May 00:56

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