Meet the Top 16 U.S. GT Academy 2012 Finalists

August 28th, 2012 by Jordan

There’s just one more GT Academy 2012 champion waiting to be crowned, and the final Race Camp for the U.S. competition has just begun at Silverstone.

Nissan has launched a new website which introduces the remaining 16 finalists to the world. If you watched the live stream of the National U.S. Finals, you’ll recognize some of the names.

Unlike the European competition, there won’t be much revealed while the U.S. Race Camp is underway. They’re saving the drama for the GT Academy reality TV show, which will air on Spike TV channel this November (stay tuned for specific dates as they’re announced).

Until then, good luck to all of the finalists this week!

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  1. Xamado7V

    Is it just me, or does Joseph Alves look like Timmy from ‘Rules of Engagement'(?)

  2. TurboProp

    Does anyone have a helmet large enough for Eric Rivera??? Anyone??? Sorry Eric, we have to cut you first…thanks for coming and here’s your complimentary GT Academy hat, er, uh…t-shirt!!! Thanks for coming!!!

    • Xamado7V


      His hair is very…erm,….questionable.
      : )

  3. Denilson

    GO EDDIE!!

  4. Youngun

    Wow, compared to the Europeans, just wow. Few typical style nerds, a few that im surprised fit in a race car and a few really dodgy looking characters too. Unemployment must be a bitch over there.

    • Bennen13

      I met all of these guys by the way, and from what I recall they were all employed (some with very impressive jobs I might add.) Sure, we’re all kinda nerdy, but not nearly to the stereotypical extent. A lot of us are huge sports fans, and play competitively in sports as well. And not one was the least bit dodgy, despite the end result for me I had one of the greatest times of my life at the national finals, even though I didn’t know a single person there. All I’m saying is; don’t judge man.

    • Youngun

      Well on the site, the majority of these are unemployed/students, and the rest dont have particularly impressive jobs except the software engineer. Like some have said, if i had 40+ hrs a week for GT academy i might of cut those few hundredth of a second off and got through but job, gym, sports and life got in the way.

    • bdubclub

      Jealousy must be a bitch over there by you Youngun, lots of respect for all of the competitors. Im pulling for Nick, Eddie, or Joe, go get em guys!!!! Also Jett as I grew up a huge fan of his Dad, kid has that same blood running through his veins, he is going to be tough to beat.

  5. Dragonwar233

    So many jealous and sore losers on GTPlanet… Seriously are people complaining because these guys worked hard to get where they are at?

    • Xamado7V

      So many a** kissers on GTPlanet… Seriously are YOU trying SO hard to be these guys(?); because these guys worked hard to get where they are at, and you’ve done nothing of the sort.


      Don’t hate the player…

    • I think it’s whoever made that picture’s fault, they all look fairly unhappy and almost depressed, if I put that thing together, I’d make it look so much better.. Don’t take this the wrong way, no hate here, but if I was one of the 16 finalists, I’d complain about that picture.. Good luck guys!

  6. Xamado7V

    A few of the GT Academy finalists DON’T look like nerds(?)

    *he hints at ‘pigs can fly’ malarky*

    : )

  7. JacksHerer

    so thats what people look like who spend hours on PS3 every day 8)

  8. japlkofk69

    Where’s the DLC?

  9. J00N10R

    Some scary lookin’ guys. looks like a lineup off a sex offender database

    • J00N10R

      Good luck to them all though!

    • Dekropttiv

      Lolol. No. Those are just regular Americans lol. Before anyone says something, I’m American.

  10. Turbo-Kai

    any bets?
    I am with Jeffery and Austin… they look most like drivers…
    But we’ll see…

    Good luck to all of them!

  11. Monatsende

    16 finalists of which 4 are students and 4 unemployed (if I counted right) makes 8 (=50%) non working people entered the finals.

    No offense. Just an image of the US social structure???

    • JTSnooks

      Generally students and unemployed people have more time to sit around playing videogames than those with jobs and families. If I had 4-6 hours extra a day to dedicate to playing videogames I guarantee you I’d have a much better shot of making the finals in a videogame competition than I do now. I played for 45 minutes last night and it was the first time I’ve turned the PS3 on in 2 weeks. Not much chance of winning anything like that.

    • I would guess that’s a fairly accurate representation of the ‘under-35 male’ demographic in any country these days.

  12. Olegonic

    They look like serial murders prison picture.

  13. VspecZR1GT2RS89

    Good luck guys, make us all proud!!!! GO USA GT Academy!!!!

  14. MPH1995Deniz

    what annoys me is that yes these are the fastest on the game but they most likely have no true natural real life talent. what gt academy should do is organise at all the go kart tracks in the country to have a time trial in an actual go kart to see who is also fast in real life. no one in kart racing allowed btw.

    • magsolid

      No offence. But your idea is really stupid. Those previous GT Academy already proved that a game can help them prepared for the real car. GT Academy is already the best idea to the find the natural talent. They proved it for years now. So go search it up.

    • magsolid

      How can your idea work at all???? I mean each country have completely different Go-Kart track???? And Go-Kart is no way near as same as the big car like the GT-R.

    • eran0004

      Yes, one problem though. This is GT Academy. You are suggesting a “GT Academy” without the “GT”. All that remains is the “Academy”, and who do you think would sponsor and organize that?

      Besides, the technical aspects of circuit driving are virtually the same in GT as in real life. Like, the theories of how to approach S-corners, hairpins, wide corners, long straights after corners etc. If you’re one of the fastest people in GT, there’s a pretty good chance that you know the theories of circuit driving well. Some are able to translate that into real life driving, and some are not. To find who is the best at translating GT into real life is what the race camp is for.

    • teppischfresser

      I think GT academy is ok, but they need to judge you on consistency not just one flying lap. That was retarded. I know damn well I would have beaten them in 3-5 hot laps

    • For the loved of god I hope you aren’t serious.

  15. A_Higher_Place

    Any repeats from last year?

  16. R34EVO9

    I lost to these guys -_-

  17. *team fortress 2 music*

  18. cphbullet

    Might just be the editing but they all look like convicts and the guy at the bottom looks like he’s from the walking dead. Anyone?

  19. “Which one of you have no real racing experience”

    A few raise their hands

    “You are the weakest link, goodbye.”

    • magsolid

      Okay, if one of those with no race experience guy wins. May i kindly ask you to smash your head 50 times?

  20. teppischfresser

    I’m still pissed I was 45th. I was hoping I could quit University. I hate it!

  21. remember, real cars don’t have gamepads or hackable net code.

  22. dsgerbc

    That’s some scary chop job right there…

  23. RentALife

    Lol that’s dhani jones the former cincinnati bengals football player wow that’s crazy

    • tpark103

      Dhani gets around. He had a show on a cable network for a while.

    • mcfizzle

      His show on Travel Channel was awesome. Too bad it only lasted the one season.

    • geomonkey

      So basically he’s loaded and spent all day and every day practising. I think GT Academy is a great idea but do people like him actually fall into the ‘raw talent’ category?

    • He’s the host of the TV show, geomonkey.

  24. HuskyGT

    I want that guy’s shirt.

  25. Good luck drivers.

  26. Toyota2jz

    Off topic, but. Will I be able to rice my whip up in GT6? ;P

  27. Good Luck!

  28. iRtheSTIG

    Good luck guys!

  29. TomBrady

    Go Jeff Lund

  30. Yep, they faces show us they spent a lot of time to make a good laps to qualify.

    • JerseyDriverSS

      Bitter? I met all these guys in person at the finals and there all cool dudes that wanna win. They could lay down those laps no problem again and again time after time. Dedication is what gets you places in life. Haters gonna hate i guess.

  31. Good luck guys!

  32. CNSpots1

    I don’t mean to be offensive but I think its obvious that the three guys with glasses are at a disadvantage.

    Because once they take those off, everything is going to be blurry as sin. that is, if they actually NEED those glasses.

    • MÜLE_9242

      Sebastian Bordais races with glasses.

    • R1600Turbo

      What’s wrong with having glasses? Who says you have to take them off?

    • tpark103

      Randy Pobst races with glasses

    • LancerEvo7

      Johnny Benson races with glasses at one point, still might.

    • Nato_777

      ever heard of contact lenses?

    • magsolid

      Last year USA GT Academy has some contestant wearing glasses, and they drive pretty well.

  33. My hopes are particularly for two of them! They know who they are ;)

    Make us proud, guys!

  34. MOTORTRENDmitch

    Huge Congratulations to the top 16 :)

  35. GeoQuin4

    Very cool, congrats to everyone and good luck! Could be a life-changing experience. Either way, I’m sure you’ll never forget it.

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