Smooth then Sweet: The 8th Annual Gran Turismo Awards

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We’re officially a week away from the launch of one of the biggest games of the year, Gran Turismo 5 speeds onto store shelves on November 24th. Days before we announced the new launch date, PlayStation hosted the 8th annual Gran Turismo Awards in Las Vegas during the 2010 Specialty Equipment Market Association (SEMA) Show, which recognizes and rewards automotive enthusiasts. SEMA Show participants were invited to submit their cars for consideration in the GT Awards, and a select panel of judges from the car enthusiast industry picked the top winner for each of the five categories — Domestic, Truck/SUV, Hot Rod, Asian Import, and European Import.

With video camera in hand and help from our San Diego video team, I followed Kazunori Yamauchi (creator of the Gran Turismo franchise) and filmed him carefully and meticulously inspecting each vehicle and their performance followed by a brief history lesson from each of their owners. Filming Kazunori at play? Man, do I love my job.

8th Annual Gran Turismo Awards 8th Annual Gran Turismo Awards

Every year, only one car can drive away with the coveted top honor. In the end, the Best in Show award went to Mark Stielow for his red 1969 Chevy Camaro. His gorgeous red muscle car will be digitally re-created and converted into a playable car in Gran Turismo.

8th Annual Gran Turismo Awards

Before and after the awards, attendees had a chance to test drive past GT Award winning cars brought to life in Gran Turismo 5. And to end the night in style, attendees were treated to a set by DJ Diplo followed by a special live performance by 30 Seconds to Mars.

For the official Gran Turismo Awards recap and photo gallery, visit the Gran Turismo 5 website now!

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