Qualifying for the new season of the NISMO PlayStation GT Academy competition has begun, giving the next wave of Gran Turismo 6 racers the opportunity to take their virtual skills in to the real world of motorsport.
The GT Academy has provided the stepping stone to a host of drivers who have gone on to rise up through the ranks of international motorsport, including GP3 racer Jann Mardenborough and Nissan ZEOD RC drivers Lucas Ordonez and Wolfgang Riep.
Any Gran Turismo 6 gamer in a participating country with the latest automatic online update will be eligible to enter the free qualifying rounds. Hopefuls can also get involved via a series of live events as well as a new Facebook based GT Academy Challenge, which will launch in May.
“I am very happy that qualifying has now begun for a sixth season of GT Academy, kick starting our search to unearth another gamer with the talent to become a real life racer,” said President of Polyphony Digital, Kazunori Yamauchi. “Every GT6 gamer will have the chance to develop their skills in a series of stunning Nissan NISMO vehicles and compare lap times with their friends while competing for a coveted spot at the next stage of the competition.”
The top PlayStation gamers from France, Italy, the UK, Spain, Portugal, Belgium, Netherlands, Luxembourg, Russia, Sweden, Poland and the Czech Republic will win a place at the National Final in their own country, before the respective winners will go on to European Race Camp at Silverstone.
The overall European winner will then receive three months of intensive training to prepare them from their endurance racing debut at the Dubai 24 Hours with Nissan in January 2015. The Dubai 24 Hours will see them go wheel-to-wheel with experienced racing drivers and show that they are worthy of becoming a NISMO athlete.
“Everyone should enter GT Academy!” added Mardenborough, who will make his GP3 debut less than three years after winning the competition. “It’s open for anyone to enter. If you have a PlayStation 3 and a copy of Gran Turismo 6, just see how you go against everyone across Europe – that’s all I had in mind the year I won. If being a racing driver was your childhood dream, then the NISMO PlayStation GT Academy is your perfect opportunity to live it!”