Aspiring GT Academy competitors in the UK who can't quite top the time trial charts in the GT6 demo available from the PlayStation Store need not fret too much, as a new route into this year's finals has opened up.
Referred to as a "wildcard" event – and similar to the previous one held at last week's Goodwood Festival of Speed, this new competition will be held from tomorrow (July 19th) up until this Sunday (July 21st) at the Sony spot inside the Nissan Innovation Station at The O2 in London.
Across the three days, the four fastest virtual drivers will each be allocated their own slot in the GT Academy UK National Finals, effectively bypassing the main online qualification aspect of this year's tournament.
Before anyone starts criticising this "easy way" into the main GT Academy process, it's worth pointing out that the four fastest competitors will almost certainly hold their own against those who made their way into the tournament via the online demo. Last year, for instance, Wildcard winner Jack O'Neil made his way into the final stage of the GT Academy; the 'Race Camp'.
Speaking of 'Race Camp' participants, GT Academy 2011 winnder Jann Mardenborough will be present at The O2's Wildcard competition on the Sunday, so it may be worth asking him for a few pointers and tips on how the eke the most out the virtual machinery and the Silverstone GP circuit…
Our very own Alan Boiston will also be attending the event on Sunday afternoon, so do keep an eye out for him around about the Nissan Innovation Station.