GT Academy 2012 Race Camp - Day 3
First Elimination of GT Academy European Race Camp 2012 See 36 Reduced To 24
Monday, 19 August, 2012: The ecstasy of a full day of exciting driving at the famous Silverstone circuit was harshly replaced tonight by the agony of elimination from Nissan and PlayStation®’s gamer-to-racer competition for 12 of the 36 competitors. Each territory group of six has now been reduced to four after three tough days at Race Camp.
A theoretical masterclass in circuit driving was followed by one hour of guiding the mighty Nissan GT-R around Silverstone’s National Circuit, with expert instruction from the GT Academy professionals.
A complete change from the smooth tarmac of the legendary race track was next, with the competitors put through their paces in a 328 horsepower Nissan 370Z, specially adapted to run on Silverstone’s rally stage. The rally challenge was incorporated to test the PlayStation gamers’ adaptability, car control and their ability to listen and react to instruction.
The results (eliminated drivers crossed out):
|FRANCE||ITALY||UK and IRELAND|
|Sebastien BERTRAND||Andrea COSARO|
|Andrea FASULO||David WILLIAMS|
|Pierre LENOIR||Darian ROJNIC|
|Steven GASSIOT||Jack O’NEILL|
|Kevin BARTSCH||Moreno COVERI||Des FOLEY (IRE)|
|IBERIA||BENELUX||SWITZERLAND, AUSTRIA, POLAND|
|Diogo SOUSA (POR)||Wolfgang REIP (BEL)||Rolf UELTSCHI (SUI)|
|Hugo GONÇALVES (POR)||Sacha GORLÉ (BEL)||Guillaume BLANC (SUI)|
|Christoph STINGEDER (AUT)|
|Daniel HERRERA (ESP)||Frank VAN GASTEREN (NED)|
|Jesus SICILIA (ESP)||Enrico MELE (NED)|
|Krystian KORZENIOWSKI (POL)|
Comments from Day 3 of Race Camp
Sébastien Buemi (CH) (Switzerland, Austria, Poland mentor): “A very difficult decision looking at everything including fitness, driving skills and even levels of communication. We took the decision to stop with Matthias and Tomasz because we didn’t see that much from them. Matthias didn’t seem like he was willing to give everything. He’s a nice guy, but did not have the winning attitude.
“Tomasz, on the other hand, had a good attitude. He was a bit older than the other guys, but that didn’t stop him. He seemed comfortable in the sports cars, but couldn’t adapt to the lighter karts and single seaters. He didn’t raise his level and was very cautious. I don’t think he had what is needed to race in Dubai, as we need someone with the whole package.
“They will not be happy, but this is the nature of the sport, especially, when you are aiming for the top level. It was the right decision, but it is hard because I had to kill their dream and that is a big responsibility for me. But my job is to find the rightful winner. Those two finished last in the last exercise, and so my decision was confirmed.”
Vitantonio Liuzzi (ITA): “Definitely we have raised the level of GT Academy this year – not just the competitors, but also the challenges, the systems and even the lifestyle of the competitors. Last year there were only two drivers per country. This year we have six and I am very impressed with the level of my group. They are working hard and are very competitive - with each other, but also I think they are one of the most competitive groups. It is hard to have to send a couple home tonight.
“Today was busy and they were challenged in many different categories – tarmac, gravel, single seaters, sports cars. Everything was so different, but my job was to try to prepare them so that they would know what to expect and to give them tips. This is important to help them make the switch from virtual to reality.”
Des Foley (IRE), stays in the competition: “The day ended very well but, in fact, it is a day I would rather forget. I was a bit mediocre in a few things, so I need to learn some lessons and be stronger tomorrow. I felt I had an off day and my head was not in the right place. I was very nervous and thought I was going to be eliminated, so to get the opportunity to prove myself tomorrow is great.
“I’m excited. We know nothing about what we are doing until the very last moment, but that makes it more exciting – other than being beasted at seven o’ clock in the morning. But I suppose that is part of what we have to do to show we want it. I am just looking forward to getting behind the wheel tomorrow to show that I deserve to be here.”
Raul Pereira (POR), eliminated tonight: “GT Academy has been been pretty good. I‘ve learned many different things with experienced drivers and F1 drivers. I’ll take a lot of these lessons with me and put them into practice with my own projects. I aim to use my GT Academy experience for self-projection. I recently bought a car and I want to get it equipped to do some races and hopefully get some funding.
“Even though today was sad that I am out, it was my favourite day – rally, GT-R, single-seaters – that is a very good day."