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

August 28th, 2012 by Jordan Greer

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. Aug. 30, 1:22pm

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

  2. Aug. 30, 8:39am

    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!!!

    • Aug. 30, 1:15pm


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

  3. Aug. 29, 4:49pm

    GO EDDIE!!

    • Aug. 29, 4:49pm

      And.. GO REES!!

  4. Aug. 29, 3:43pm

    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.

    • Aug. 29, 6:39pm

      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.

    • Aug. 30, 5:15am

      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.

    • Aug. 31, 12:38pm

      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. Aug. 29, 12:56pm

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

    • Aug. 29, 2:08pm

      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…

    • Aug. 29, 11:21pm
      Mac K

      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. Aug. 29, 12:07pm

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

    *he hints at ‘pigs can fly’ malarky*

    : )

  7. Aug. 29, 11:18am

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

  8. Aug. 29, 9:32am

    Where’s the DLC?

  9. Aug. 29, 8:06am

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

    • Aug. 29, 8:15am

      Good luck to them all though!

    • Aug. 29, 9:13am

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

  10. Aug. 29, 6:38am

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

    Good luck to all of them!

  11. Aug. 29, 3:32am

    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???

    • Aug. 29, 10:48am

      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.

    • Aug. 29, 11:16am

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

  12. Aug. 29, 1:55am

    They look like serial murders prison picture.

    • Aug. 29, 6:43am


    • Aug. 29, 7:06am

      :) they do!

  13. Aug. 29, 1:36am

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

  14. Aug. 29, 1:33am

    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.

    • Aug. 29, 2:04am

      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.

    • Aug. 29, 2:09am

      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.

    • Aug. 29, 5:17am

      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.

    • Aug. 29, 9:27am

      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

    • Aug. 29, 12:02pm
      Mac K

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

  15. Aug. 28, 11:39pm

    Any repeats from last year?

  16. Aug. 28, 8:57pm

    I lost to these guys -_-

    • Aug. 28, 10:11pm

      join the club

    • Aug. 29, 12:09am

      Ahhhh I think we all did!!!

    • Aug. 29, 8:10pm

      if i had a wheel i would’ve made it.. getting one this Christmas so we will see who goes to gta next year

  17. Aug. 28, 8:44pm

    *team fortress 2 music*

    • Aug. 28, 11:00pm


  18. Aug. 28, 7:21pm

    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. Aug. 28, 6:44pm

    “Which one of you have no real racing experience”

    A few raise their hands

    “You are the weakest link, goodbye.”

    • Aug. 28, 11:13pm

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

  20. Aug. 28, 6:10pm

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

  21. Aug. 28, 6:04pm

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

  22. Aug. 28, 3:59pm

    That’s some scary chop job right there…

  23. Aug. 28, 3:54pm

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

    • Aug. 28, 3:59pm

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

    • Aug. 29, 12:30am

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

    • Aug. 29, 3:06am

      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?

    • Aug. 29, 11:57am

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

  24. Aug. 28, 3:39pm

    I want that guy’s shirt.

    • Aug. 28, 3:52pm

      Which one?

    • Aug. 28, 7:28pm

      The Nurburgring T-Shirt.

  25. Aug. 28, 3:31pm

    Good luck drivers.

    • Aug. 28, 3:54pm

      +1 good look chaps

  26. Aug. 28, 3:08pm

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

    • Aug. 28, 3:53pm

      Fried or steamed rice?

  27. Aug. 28, 3:03pm

    Good Luck!

  28. Aug. 28, 3:02pm

    Good luck guys!

  29. Aug. 28, 3:00pm

    Go Jeff Lund

    • Aug. 28, 3:54pm

      Go Rees Gould

  30. Aug. 28, 2:57pm

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

    • Aug. 28, 4:05pm

      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. Aug. 28, 2:55pm

    Good luck guys!

  32. Aug. 28, 2:36pm

    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.

    • Aug. 28, 2:39pm

      Sebastian Bordais races with glasses.

    • Aug. 28, 2:41pm

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

    • Aug. 28, 3:56pm

      Randy Pobst races with glasses

    • Aug. 28, 6:39pm

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

    • Aug. 28, 7:12pm

      ever heard of contact lenses?

    • Aug. 29, 5:59am

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

  33. Aug. 28, 2:29pm

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

    Make us proud, guys!

  34. Aug. 28, 2:27pm

    Huge Congratulations to the top 16 :)

  35. Aug. 28, 2:24pm

    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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