'Don't meet your idols, you will only be disappointed'. Pfft clearly that person hasn't ever had the chance to do so! The JGTC years of racing were the first time I really spotted the massive rubbered, angry looking cars that were pounding the pavement in Japan. There was always one car though that stuck out for me, the Pennzoil Nismo GT-R. Immortalised in scale model form by Tamiya, and my 'go-to' race car in Gran Turismo. Never did I think I would ever see this machine in real life.
Fast forward to 2014 and I am wandering down pitlane at the Nismo festival in Fuji Speedway. Low and behold, there it was sitting in the garage. The 1999 JGTC champ. One of those surreal moments where I was transported back to being 17, and seeing photos of the car for the first time. I got lucky one more time to spot the car in it's current home as well - Nissan DNA Museum.
For whatever reason it is, this car has stuck in my mind. Perhaps it was the livery, maybe the massive wheels and rubber, or the fact that it destroyed the competition in the '99 season. I don't know, all I know is that coming face to face with this car was an unforgettable experience. Meeting your idols is exactly what it IS cracked up to be and more!