V8 driver logs into new liv­ery ... and the Townsville 400

Townsville Bulletin - - SPORT - RO­HAN O’NEIL

THERE will be no miss­ing Michael Caruso’s num­ber 23 NISMO Nis­san Al­tima V8 Su­per­car this week­end when he takes on a strik­ing new look for the Townsville 400.

Caruso will pi­lot an Al­tima V8 with a spe­cial “black chrome” GT Academy liv­ery to cel­e­brate the up­com­ing Aus­tralian fi­nals of the Nis­san PlayS­ta­tion GT Academy at Warner Bros Movie World.

GT Academy is a col­lab­o­ra­tion be­tween PlayS­ta­tion and Nis­san that uses the vir­tual world of the Gran Turismo 6 com­puter game to un­earth real- world rac­ing ta­lent, and Caruso said he was ex­cited to help pro­mote the com­pe­ti­tion.

“This is eas­ily the best- look­ing V8 Su­per­car I will have the priv­i­lege of driv­ing,” he said.

“We see lots of dif­fer­ent colour schemes and spe­cial de­signs from time to time, but this GT Academy liv­ery is go­ing to stick in peo­ple’s minds for a long time.

“The GT Academy is a great con­cept and I hope our new design can en­sure that more and more peo­ple get down to Movie World and try and qual­ify for the fi­nal.”

Caruso will be hop­ing the new liv­ery marks a change in for­tune for him this round, with the 32- year- old com­ing off a 21st place in the third race at the Dar­win Triple Crown three weeks ago.

The ex­pe­ri­enced driver fared bet­ter in the ear­lier race at Dar­win, fin­ish­ing fifth and 14th re­spec­tively and the num­ber 23 driver is ex­cited to re­turn to the Townsville 400 and per­form for the city’s pas­sion­ate fans. “The peo­ple that it at­tracts and hav­ing all the lo­cals that come out to the track, they are very pas­sion­ate about hav­ing their own events,” he said.

“That’s al­ways re­ally nice to see be­cause we travel such long dis­tances to get here and to have that sup­port makes us feel re­ally wel­come and it gives the event a great feel.”

Caruso’s new liv­ery will make its de­but this Fri­day at the open­ing V8 Su­per­cars prac­tice ses­sions at Reid Park.

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