My Journey to the GTR NISMO
FRom Playing GRan Turismo to owning "The One" GTR NISMO
My History with Nissan runs deep. My parents each had Z’s and it all started young when my mother showed me a picture of me sitting on a 280Z when I was barley a couple years old.
As I grew up, like most of my generation, I was always fascinated with technology and gaming.
My first real introduction to the GTR was through Gran Turismo. You can say it set me out on a path. I would always choose the GTR as it not being available to us here in America made it all the more intriguing and made me want to explore why this car had such a mystique.
I soon discovered Super GT racing because of Gran Turismo and that started my love affair with all things NISMO. I would scour the internet for any pictures or footage I could of the GTR and then Z NISMO racecars. In doing so I became a self professed expert (nerd) which led me to my first work with the Nissan Enthusiast community
My persistence and knowledge led me to a role of Administrator in what was at the time the world’s largest 350z community. In 2003 I had purchased a 350Z and immediately sought out the ultra rare JDM NISMO S-Tune parts. With this car I had m first taste of track days and began to Autocross which has become a true passion of mine
In 2005 Nissan’s introduction of the GTR Proto and promise to offer the car globally was the first inclination for me that my dream of owning a GTR might actually happen. I began to devote most of my time to finding every spy picture or rumor about the upcoming GTR that was out there even if it happened to be just pictures of a certain suspicious looking Infiniti G35 test mule!
Soon after, along with some colleagues of mine from the Nissan Enthusiast community, I Co- founded North American Owners Club (NAGTROC) in 2006. Timing was everything and we rode the wave of excitement and anticipation in the community capitalizing on everyone’s hunger for information about the new GTR. This gave us a respected notoriety before the car was even released
In 2007 I purchased one of the very first factory 350z NISMO cars #33 as I fell in love with the Super GT inspired design.
2007 was a busy year as in November after all the spy shots and all speculation I got to finally see the R35 GTR! In early 2008 I got a few early opportunities to sample the GTR before it went on sale. I was blown away and immediately ordered mine. Trading in the NISMO Z was bitter sweet but the GTR was a lifelong dream. Little did I know at the time 6 years later a GTR NISMO be on the horizon.
For the next few years I continued my role as Co-Founder of NAGTROC and saw the community grow beyond what I had ever imagined. I couldn’t believe it, I was responsible for an actual official owners club here in the US! It was a long time coming!
Since then ive spent everyday in the community sharing my real world experience with the GTR being a brand ambassador as well as interacting with members and connecting with owners both online and off. One of my proudest accomplishments has been the ability to work with Nissan to bring our ever reaching owners club base from all over the country out to the recent GTR Experience and NISMO Performance Academy events.
By chance and maybe fate I became owner the first production 2012 Black Edition GTR built for the US! I used this car to really hone my driving skills while learning an appreciation and a deeper understanding of the engineering that went into this machine. This car was special to me as I even had the car signed my chief engineer Mizuno-San.
in 2013 When I heard Mr Ghosn announce the GTR NISMO and that it would be “The Lion” I became a man on a mission as owning this car would be the culmination of everything Ive worked for in the community for over last 10 years. I felt as if the NISMO was built especially for me as it combined elements of everything ive had a passion for from Super GT racing the elusive SpecV GTR and the heritage of the NISMO brand itself Having the opportunity to own the very first GTR NISMO ever produced for the US market is something I never could have imagined. Its much more than a car to me it represents a lifestyle that has been truly enriching and affirms that path I set out on.