Gran Turismo Sport Police Training
Officers training using Gran Turismo Sport. PlayStation

Lincolnshire Police and PlayStation have teamed up to offer specialist operations officers additional training for high-speed pursuit driving using upcoming PS4 racing game Gran Turismo Sport.

Four officers spent the day at Silverstone race track to test the game's effect on their driving. First they logged a lap time on the track itself, then practised in the game to see if it would improve their times later on.

The result saw a marked improvement in performance, including one driver shaving 5.7 seconds off their lap time.

The event was set up to "explore whether additional methods could help boost established police training structures", according to a statement.

GT Sport, which marks the returning of the pioneering simulation game after four years and includes an all-new virtual reality mode, helped the officers identify "any areas for improvement such as under or oversteer, braking late and carrying too much speed in corners".

Assistant chief constable Shaun West said: "There will never be a replacement for traditional training methods but we are always looking for innovative ways to supplement the learning of our officers and staff.

"If Gran Turismo can help to train world class racing drivers, then we were keen to explore whether it could offer anything to our officers and help expand the way we think about evolving and refreshing our training methods."

The event was part of the GT Academy, a contest set up in 2008 by PlayStation, developer Polyphony Digital and Nissan that gives Gran Turismo players the chance to become real-life professional drivers.

GT Academy managing director Laurence Wiltshire said: "GT Academy has proven that the skills learned via Gran Turismo directly transfer from the virtual track onto the real one. This is thanks to the incredibly accurate simulation of the tracks but more importantly the simulation of the cars, their physics and how they handle.

"GT Sport is the best in the series history and, with the addition of VR mode, offers the most realistic driving simulation yet. It's one thing to train racing drivers but the idea that a game could help officers respond to emergencies more efficiently is mind-blowing."

GT Sport is set for release exclusively on PS4 on Wednesday 18 October.