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Friday, May 20, 2011

Mid-Field Raceway

John B. Marine | 9:03 PM | | | | |
The challenge provided by Mid-Field Raceway is a somewhat long course with plenty of high-speed depth. This track made its debut in Gran Turismo 2. It is a 13-turn road course with plenty of high-speed corners. The real challenging parts of the course are on the western end of the course. As it is a relatively short course, it isn't too difficult to land some quick lap times here.

This post is all about the great GT road course known as Mid-Field Raceway (or Midfield Raceway).

--- Mid-Field Raceway ---
Mid-Field Raceway
^ You must have a fast car that can still corner quite well if you expect to win at Mid-Field Raceway.

At its very core, Mid-Field Raceway is a road course that is easy-going in nature, but deceptive if you take it too casually. The course features two tunnels and thirteen turns. It's really the second half of this course that will test you. Once you exit the first tunnel, you are basically told that this course will get difficult. Mid-Field Raceway isn't extremely challenging. You just have to generate a solid line that helps you clear this course fast. This was the course you raced on for the Japanese Nationals in Gran Turismo 2. Having a fast car helps, but you'll need just a little more to help you to win races here. Laps fly by here in the fastest cars.

Crossing under the overpass leads you to a deceptive Turn 1. It can be easy to overshoot this section if taken the wrong way. A bad entry into Turn 1 will lower your speed heading into Turn 2 as Turn 2 is an increasing radius corner. A straight follows into a high-speed chicane at Turns 3 and 4. Turn 5 comes in abruptly to upset your car's balance a bit. A good entry sets you up for the first tunnel and through Turn 6. Heading into Turns 7 and 8, try to keep the car as far inside as possible without going into the grass. If your car bogs into this section, you're going to have an unhealthy case of understeer trying to point the car in the correct position. You don't want your car going wide in this section when it could be pointed as far inside as possible. Turns 9 through 11 now await. You can take Turns 9 and 10 in two ways- either with minimal to moderate braking heading into the hairpin at Turn 11, or almost at full speed (unbalanced car and all) and try to dive bomb deep into Turn 11. Better safe than sorry- minimal or moderate braking for proper entry into the Turn 11 hairpin is the way to go. Go through the other tunnel to go to Turn 12. As you go uphill, power your way through Turn 13 and make that high-speed dash down to the Start/Finish line.

One of my lap records doing this course in any GT was 57.600 in an F/686m in Gran Turismo 3.

I couldn't find any videos without music, so my video choices are limited.

Gran Turismo 2.

I couldn't find a video that didn't include music, so this was the best I could find. Enjoy this look at GT2's version of Mid-Field Raceway:

Gran Turismo 3.

GT3's rendition of this course was obviously much more beautiful under PS2 power. The textures and environment are smoother and richer both in color and in detail. There are even a number of styling details to set itself apart from GT2's version. Here is a demo lap around Mid-Field Raceway:

Gran Turismo 4 and Tourist Trophy.

There wasn't too much difference graphically between GT3's Mid-Field and GT4's Mid-Field. GT4 obviously had differences such as less saturated (which is sad for me because I love rich colors) graphics. It still looks great. Here is a demo lap of this course in GT4:

A great thing about motorcycles is that you can dig deeper into corners and power out effectively. However, it's tougher to hug the inside on sweeping long corners. See for yourself in this Tourist Trophy video lap of Mid-Field Raceway:

I thought Mid-Field was in Gran Turismo 5, but it is NOT in GT5. So it's sad not to see Mid-Field included in GT5.

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