FIRST-EVER FIA-CERTIFIED GRAN TURISMO® CHAMPIONS CROWNED IN MONACO
[MONACO], 18 November 2018 – History was made today as the winners of the world’s inaugural FIA Certified Gran Turismo Championship were crowned in Monaco. Igor Fraga (IOF_RACING17), 20, from Brazil took the Nations Cup trophy, whilst the Lexus team reigned supreme in the Manufacturers Series. The winners will receive the same honours as real-world motorsport champions and be presented with their trophy at the FIA Prize Giving Gala in December.
The path to glory for Fraga started back in June when competitors from around the world took part in the online phase of the championships with races taking place on a weekly basis over three seasons. The championship was spilt into three regions: Asia-Oceania; Europe, Middle East and Africa; and the Americas. With points accumulated in the final season, the top-scoring players headed to regional finals in Tokyo, Madrid and Las Vegas respectively. Fraga’s victory came in a hard-fought final race in which he had to move up from 10th place to the lead in order to secure his place in history.
The Manufacturer Series, meanwhile, ran concurrently online with the top three competitors from each region representing the top 16-ranked manufacturers invited to progress directly to the World Finals. It was a tight battle, but Tyrell Meadows (GT_Academy2013), Vincent Rigaud (Oscaro_SkyPikmin), Kanata Kawakami (Kawakana222), proved to be the dream team for Lexus displaying world-class teamwork and race craft to take the win in an endurance race with driver changes on Saturday night.
The huge success of the world’s first eSport tournament officially certified by the FIA (Fédération Internationale de l'Automobile), has also proven that the combination of the game’s realistic vehicle physics simulation with exceptional skill, can shift gears and perceptions of online racing, encouraging experts to consider it as a turning point in the future of motorsport.
Moving out of the slipstream of mainstream motorsports, the virtual car creations in Gran Turismo Sport are designed to peak manufacturer standards and performance conditions, affording drivers a supreme experience behind the wheel, so they can test the same skills, precision and audacity as real-world experts.
As a result, online racing is gaining serious traction amongst players, spectators, manufacturers and not to mention the FIA. With over 3 million tuning in online over the three-day final, this event marks what is now an incredible opportunity for anyone who has ever dreamt of being a pro racer to be in with a chance of taking the wheel and creating a driving legacy to rival the sporting greats.
A total of 66 contestants from the three regions attended the inaugural event in Monaco, which saw Fraga, Meadows, Rigaud and Kawakami claim victory and make history.
Kazunori Yamauchi, creator of the Gran Turismo franchise and President of Polyphony Digital Inc.commented:
“Today created a phenomenal legacy for online racing e-Motorsport. I am incredibly proud of all the drivers who took part in the championship and thankful to the spectators for showing their support. What has made me most happy this year is seeing the competitors enjoying GT Sport, and that their performances have been so exciting and worthy of genuine athletes.”
Graham Stoker, Deputy President for Sport, FIA commented:
“Today’s World Finals marked another significant step for FIA-Certified virtual racing, and we congratulate all of the participants for putting on a fantastic show. The Federation recognises the enormous potential of this project as a way to reach and inspire millions of motorsport enthusiasts around the world. The level of racing talent on show proves that the skills and dedication needed to succeed in the FIA-Certified Gran Turismo Championships are extraordinary, and we look forward to welcoming today’s winners to our FIA Prize Giving Ceremony in December.”
With thanks to Sony Interactive Entertainment for the email
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