GT Academy 2012: UK & Ireland National Final

July 18th, 2012 by Andrew Evans

Six UK and Republic of Ireland players have booked their places for a Silverstone return at next month’s Boot Camp, following two days of gruelling virtual and real driving and fitness challenges.

32 competitors were invited to attend the regional final at Silverstone, which commenced with some GT5 head-to-head racing on Tuesday 17th July. The players faced three eight-man races apiece at Laguna Seca, the Nürburgring GP/D and Suzuka – a single lap to qualify at each, followed by a 3 lap race – with the bottom 14 players eliminated.

The top 18 progressed to day 2, which started with more GT5. The players were seeded into three six-man heats and the top 2 from each progressed to the “A-Final” and the final 12. The remaining twelve players raced a pair of semi-finals with the top 3 from each progressing to the “B-Final” and the final 12, with the remaining six players eliminated. Their performances in the A- and B-Finals comprised their score for the GT5 section.

These 12 then faced the other challenges. First came the media test, where finalists were faced with a barrage of tricky questions from an unrelenting press – who also scored the drivers on their answers. From there they moved to the Autotest – a very slippery car park gymkhana and two attempts to set a time (after a practice run) in a semi-race Nissan 370Z with all driving aid fuses pulled! As if this wasn’t tiring enough the players moved onto the fitness testing, where they faced standing vertical leaps, push-ups, planking and the dreaded bleep test -punctuated by a downpour of Silverstone standards, proving even Mother Nature hates a bleep test.

The scores from all events were totted up and six players were given their prize – though not before the fastest journalist in the Autotest and a GT5 time trial was given a surprise bottle of champagne (that proved to be… me).

The six winning gamers were, in order from first to sixth:

1. Des Foley (GTP_Dessy)
2. Thomas Gibson (GTP_Rutter200)
3. Dan Glover (Dantastic-_-)
4. Jack O’Neill (Jackcerracing)
5. David Williams (My3id_Dave)
6. István Demes (DemesGT)

Foley and Gibson proved to be level on points, separated only on countback (Foley gaining one more second place), while O’Neill is the only Wild Card qualifier having won his place from the Goodwood Festival of Speed.

Congratulations to all six finalists – and to the two GTP_ Registry drivers particularly. Now the challenge really begins!

With thanks to Sony Europe, Nissan, the staff at Silverstone and Jardine International.

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  1. Jul. 20, 3:18am

    Jack had some luck in final race. Two restarts when he was no where and then he managed a third. now he’s thru!! good luck to all in finals. Never mind tidgney, seems you lost out in that cape ring race!

  2. Jul. 19, 5:29pm

    Congrats Danny!!!!

  3. Jul. 19, 9:47am

    grats rutter, dessy, dantastic and to the other :-)

  4. Jul. 19, 6:00am


  5. Jul. 19, 5:01am

    Well done all! c’mon Dessy!!!!!

  6. Jul. 18, 7:22pm

    C’Mon Dessy! :D

    Just an FYI, I’m pretty sure DemesGT has a WRS PSN as well, just didn’t use it for this.

  7. Jul. 18, 7:09pm
    Mac K

    The dude on the far right looks like a young Oli Gavin :p

  8. Jul. 18, 7:08pm

    I hope next year they lengthen the pods, it was a really difficult position to sit in, as I’m sure it was for others.
    However, most participants made it an enjoyable experience…apart from a couple of outspoken members :)
    Lee, Nikov, Charles, and Greg, good to meet you guys, next year we’ll get through to the last stage…fingers crossed.
    Rutter and dessy, good luck.

  9. Jul. 18, 4:58pm

    i was there and I finished 10th:( im disappointed… but it was the best experience in my life… well done top 6 players

  10. Jul. 18, 4:55pm

    Nice coverage Famine

  11. Jul. 18, 4:12pm

    In the words of a really big Austrian guy…I’ll be back :)

    • Jul. 18, 4:34pm

      Ditto :-)

  12. Jul. 18, 4:08pm

    GTP_Dessy for the win!

  13. Jul. 18, 3:55pm

    So was Famine a finalist?

    • Jul. 18, 4:12pm

      Famine was the GTP reporter on scene.

  14. Jul. 18, 3:28pm

    I am comming back with a hat and a T-shirt :(

    • Jul. 18, 6:40pm

      great job you are still very lucky to get as far as you got you beat thousands of other players think of it that way

    • Jul. 19, 8:48am

      I found I have lost my wallet when I came back to Brighton, bad luck…

  15. Jul. 18, 3:05pm

    Was a very tough finals and untimatly, my fitness cost me making the final 6, day 1 got 21 points and was 3rd highest point scorer, day 2 morning started off just as well and qualified and finished first for the A final. Qualified second .1 behind rutter for the A final, took the lead off the line but then he regained the lead on the first corner, was about .5-0.75 down chasing him then had a big moment nearly coming off which untimatly dropped to fourth, was disapointed but in a good position going into the other tests, did pretty decent in the 370z i thought, average in the media, and although i gave my all in the fitness, it was only good enough for around 9th-10th/12th in each event. So yea quite disappointing but thouroughly enjoyed it, Des and Thomas were consistantly very strong in every event and 3-6 placed guys had a good finish in the fitness tests to make boot camp. Will be back more fitter and hopefully more consistant all round next year! Best of luck to top 6. Any one who of the top 12 scores? as i out of intrest would be nice to know how many points off 6th i was.

    • Jul. 18, 3:44pm

      Were you the fella with the missus there?

    • Jul. 18, 3:49pm

      No was with my brother…

    • Jul. 18, 3:55pm

      Oh, okay. Well always next year. You did well mate.
      Great couple of days, good bunch of guys all round. Well done to all of you really.

  16. Jul. 18, 3:00pm

    Well done men!

  17. Jul. 18, 2:56pm

    well done guys. come on the British isles

    • Jul. 18, 3:36pm

      British Isles???, That term doesnt exist anymore

    • Jul. 18, 3:44pm

      Okay, come on Ireland and UK.

  18. Jul. 18, 2:51pm

    Foley is going to spank it. Saw his car control live and it was the business.

  19. Jul. 18, 2:12pm

    GO RUTTER200!!

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