Friday, December 4, 2009

The value of simulation: Gran Turismo gamer becomes pro race driver

Back in 2008, Lucas Ordonez lived what seemed like an ordinary existence. The 22-year-old Spanish student was an avid motorsports fan, but he lacked the suitable investment necessary to become a professional race driver and had virtually given up on racing. Besides, he was already knee-deep in trying to complete an Master of Business Administration (MBA). But it was Ordonez' passion for virtual racing, particularly his love of Gran Turismo, that made him stand out from his peers — both off the track and eventually on it. In just a few months, Ordonez' life was transformed from console dreamer to racing the real thing at a real race track in Europe . And Ordonez managed to do the unthinkable: go from the couch car to the race car, and win.

Driving a car in real life and on a computer may be pretty different, but the racing part is probably pretty similar. The lines, passing, braking, and accelerating are what matter in a race, and I'd imagine games can teach these aspects pretty well.

hat tip: slashdot

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