This fortnight’s Gran Turismo 7 Lap Time Challenge sees players tackle Japan’s Suzuka Circuit with the legendary McLaren MP4/4 Formula 1 car, as driven by both Alain Prost and Ayrton Senna during the 1988 season.
The car, designed by Steve Nichols, was the dominant force in 1988, taking 15 wins from 16 races, with Prost claiming seven wins. Senna took eight victories on his way to the drivers title, including an unorthodox victory at Suzuka.
The Brazilian stalled off pole position but was able to bump start his car into life and begin an enthralling charge through the pack in changeable conditions to take the win from his teammate (who was suffering from gearbox issues).
The win was significant as Suzuka was the home track of McLaren’s engine supplier Honda. The Japanese engine supplier had reached peak development of its 1.5l turbo power unit ahead of the ban on forced induction engines in 1989.
Although Prost insisted McLaren bring Senna onboard, their relationship began to deteriorate, leading to Prost departing for Ferrari in 1990. This was before Prost claimed another world title at the 1989 Suzuka Grand Prix after contact with Senna resulted in the Brazilian’s disqualification.
The 1990 Suzuka GP saw their relationship deteriorate further, as Senna, upset at pole position being on the dirty side of the track, vowed to take the lead into Turn 1 no matter what. And he did, by way of crashing into Prost, putting both cars into retirement and gifting Senna another championship.
GT7‘s Lap Time Challenge is a time trial mode where you compete against other players to set the fastest time on the leader board. However, there’s a caveat: setting a lap within three per cent of the fastest time nets players 2,000,000 Credits.
If you aren’t quite quick enough for that then lapping within five per cent gains you 1,000,000 Credits, while a time inside 10 per cent of the fastest results in a 250,000 Credit pay-out.
Players can re-live the glory years of Senna and Prost’s rivalry in F1’s most dominant car in this fortnight’s Lap Time Challenge, where the 8,000,000 Credit McLaren can be sampled for free thanks to GT7’s renting mechanic, introduced on 25th April.
For GT7 newbies, the Sport mode – where you can find the Daily Races and Lap Time Challenge – unlocks after completing Café Menu Book nine.
Recommended car: McLaren MP4/4 ’88 (Legend Cars, 8,000,000 Credits or free rental)
Lap Time Challenge
Car: McLaren MP4/4 ’88
Track: Suzuka Circuit
Entry Period: 29th September-13th October
Categories: McLaren MP4/4 ’88
Wide Body: Prohibited
Tyre Choice: Racing: Medium, Intermediate, Wet
BoP/Tuning Forbidden: Mid-speed (M)
Car Used: McLaren MP4/4 ’88
Car Settings: Specified
Track Limit: Normal
Shortcut Penalty: Light