From Couch To Racetrack: Gamer-To-Racer GT Academy 2012

By Alex Hamilton, 17 April 2012

Face it, you've completed Gran Turismo 5 and you've constantly came first against your buddies online. There's nothing more to prove. Wrong. If you're really convinced that you're the best racing driver in the world, why not enter the Gamer-to-Racer programme for your chance to take part in the Dubai 24 Hours in January 2013 for real. Not on the sofa, in a car, in real life!

Now in its fourth year, taking part is as easy as fetching yourself another drink from the kitchen. Simply get Gran Turismo 5 fired up on the PS3 and sign yourself up for a live GT Academy event. These live races will be held from the 1 May until 24 June 2012.

Fastest gamers from their respected country will then battle it out in a thrilling virtual final and then national competition winners will then enter Race Camp and get behind a wheel of a Nissan sports car to race it around Silverstone in August.

Ultimate winners will then be put through an intense Driver Development Programme to prepare them for the Dubai 24 Hours.

GT Academy has been recognised as a potential route into motorsport, with past winners getting podium finishes at Le Mans and Dubai and the opportunity to develop their careers. Jann Mardenborough, the Brit that won in 2011, is racing a Nissan GT-R Nismo GT3 in the Blancpain Endurance Series.

If you think you've got what it takes, then sign up! President of Polyphony Digital, Kazunori Yamauchi says,"You don't have to be an expert to have a go. Added to that, each country will host live GT Academy entry events to ensure that as many people as possible can enter the 2012 GT Academy." All the terms and conditions and extra info can be found at eu.gran-turismo.com. It could be you standing here next year.

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