In just under four weeks we’ll find out who’ll be the first ever official Olympic champion in motor sport — and they’ll win their medal through playing Gran Turismo Sport.
It’s a sentence we still can’t quite fully believe, but the Olympic Virtual Series, a full Olympic-level event recognized by the International Olympic Committee will come to a close next month. As we reported earlier in the week, the official qualification time trial in GT Sport ended a couple of days ago, with Italy’s Valerio Gallo coming out on top.
The 16 qualified drivers will head to a three-race final early next month, with the racing itself taking place on June 6. However we’re going to have to wait a while to find out the results, with the final set for a June 23 broadcast date.
At the moment we’re not sure what the format of the final will be other than the car and track combinations. If the Olympic event follows the traditional GT Sport finals format, the opening two races will be shorter, sprint races, with a longer final race requiring at least two pit stops. We do know that the third race will be worth double points, further hinting at a longer race:
- Race 1 – Toyota 86 Gr.4 – Tokyo Expressway East Outer Loop
- Race 2 – Toyota GR Yaris – Sardegna Road Track B
- Race 3 – Toyota GR Supra Racing Concept Gr.3 – Dragon Trail Seaside
Ordinarily it’s Gran Turismo’s own channels that show these live events, but it appears that the Olympic Virtual Series final will be available on the PlayStation Twitch channel.
Given the tight nature of qualifying, with just 0.391s covering the 16 drivers, it’s likely to be a closely contested event. All three individual GT Sport world champions — Igor Fraga (Brazil), Mikail Hizal (Germany), and Takuma Miyazono (Japan) — have qualified, along with several familiar faces from the GT Sport World Tour. Andrew Brooks (Canada), Daniel Solis (USA), Angel Inostroza (Chile), and Baptiste Beauvois (France) have all attended multiple FIA finals events before.
There’s some new drivers too, with Nikita Moysov (Czech Republic), Kostas Konstantinou (Greece), Stanford Chau (Hong Kong), and Taj Aiman (Malaysia) all taking part in their first top-tier Gran Turismo finals event. Nathayos Sirigiya (Thailand) was previously a finalist at GT Academy Asia in 2015, reaching the final race.
We’ll bring you all the news on the Olympic Virtual Series final as we get it — and good luck to all the competitors.