VIDEO: How gaming is transforming Australian motor racing

Gran Turismo 4

For most aspiring young drivers, dreams of grand prix glory are usually only played out on a PC or PlayStation console.

However, with the advent of the Aussie Driver Search and the Gran Turismo Academy, young drivers are now able to take their talents behind the wheel to an actual racetrack.

Recently, the latest round of the Aussie Driver Search was held at Victoria’s Winton Motor Raceway, a circuit located 175km from Melbourne.

Drivers are given four laps to learn their craft, whilst sharing their car with a professional racing car driver who guides them through the circuit, teaching them racing lines, apex speeds and braking points.

Depending on the driver’s budget, there are a variety of cars that can be driven, such as a Commodore and Falcon ute, a Toyota GT86 and, for the hardened drivers, your choice of a V8 Supercar or Australian GT vehicle.

David Florio was one such driver in the Aussie Driver Search, choosing to drive a Commodore ute. He says that playing Gran Turismo helped him get used to the grip levels, braking performance and speed of the Commodore.

“It allowed me to have experience of driving behind the wheel in numerous tests, whether it’s straight-line, braking, cornering, acceleration, how to pick up various grip levels,”  he said.

“Tests aside, you also have the racing, racing etiquette – that paid big dividends in regards to other racers on the track at the time… it made me feel comfortable when I hopped into the car.”

Florio said he enjoyed taking on the 3km layout at Winton – especially given it was his first time behind the wheel at a racetrack.

“The track was just awesome,” he said.  “I was smiling like Daniel Ricciardo the whole time! It was just breathtaking.”

For more information about the Aussie Driver Search, go to https://aussiedriversearch.com.

About Michael Thompson 11 Articles
Aspiring sports journalist from Melbourne. Editor at The AFL Update. Contributor in the Northern Football Netball League. Social media @ Mernda Football Netball Club/Melbourne Mustangs