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Getting a bit Chile?


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#1 BRG

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Posted 01 November 2017 - 17:56

In its next season, Formula E, the electrifying new series, will race on a street circuit in Santiago, the capital of Chile.

 

This made me think.  What is the history of Chile in motor racing?  Does it have much of a domestic following? I can recall one Chilean driver who reached as far as F1, Eliseo Salazar, but I can think of no others who have ever troubled the motor racing record books.  Nor in rallying, come to that.

 

Chile seems to have a few race tracks.  Codegua seems to be current, as it was used for the Argentinian TC2000 series in 2014.  Then there are Chinquihue, Huachalume  & Quilaco which look operational but judging from the photos have little or no real infrastructure.  There is Temuco which may be in use, and San Pedro which looks defunct from the aerial view. 

 

Nobody can question the place of Brazil or Argentina in world motor sport, yet how is it that Chile, arguably the third or fourth wealthiest and developed nation in Latin America has little or not place? 


Edited by BRG, 01 November 2017 - 17:58.


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#2 Vitesse2

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Posted 01 November 2017 - 18:15

Well, the first successful South American driver in European motor sport was a Chilean: Juan Zanelli (in Spanish)

 

The Argentinian Turismo Carretera races occasionally ventured across the Chilean border and I've seen film of similar touring car races on open roads in Chile. Chile was also to be part of a grandly-planned but never run Carrera Panamericana in the early 1940s.



#3 BRG

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Posted 01 November 2017 - 18:50

I had not heard of Zanelli before, but he seems to have been a rather significant figure, albeit whilst based in France. Unlike some others in Chile who have been suspected of habouring escaped senior Nazis, he was on the side of the angels, joining the Resistance and dying in a fight with the Gestapo.  One for thread on racing drivers in the war.



#4 nexfast

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Posted 01 November 2017 - 21:35

In its next season, Formula E, the electrifying new series, will race on a street circuit in Santiago, the capital of Chile.

 

This made me think.  What is the history of Chile in motor racing?  Does it have much of a domestic following? I can recall one Chilean driver who reached as far as F1, Eliseo Salazar, but I can think of no others who have ever troubled the motor racing record books.  Nor in rallying, come to that.

 

Chile seems to have a few race tracks.  Codegua seems to be current, as it was used for the Argentinian TC2000 series in 2014.  Then there are Chinquihue, Huachalume  & Quilaco which look operational but judging from the photos have little or no real infrastructure.  There is Temuco which may be in use, and San Pedro which looks defunct from the aerial view. 

 

Nobody can question the place of Brazil or Argentina in world motor sport, yet how is it that Chile, arguably the third or fourth wealthiest and developed nation in Latin America has little or not place? 

 

 

There was a Chilean GP in 1950 for Formula libre cars won by Fangio in a Ferrari 166 at Circuito Pedro de Valdivia Norte. Two Chilean drivers entered: Bartolomé Ortiz Sanz and Ismael Gonzalez, driving a Gordini and a Maserati respectively. In the fifties still Eduardo Kovacs-Jones and Raul Jaras competed in the Buenos Aires 1000Km. More recently (nineties) Cristián McKenna did Formulas Opel and Nissan and in the following decade Pablo Donoso raced in Formula BMW, Formula Nissan and IndyLights while Martin Scuncio drove in Star Mazda in the States a few years ago. There was a Formula 3 championship for while but those who wanted to follow a career in single-seaters usally did their racing "education" in Argentina. There is also a Chilean Rally Championhip but you probably never heard of Jorge Martinez, Cristobal Vidaurre or Pedro Devaud as they reamain strictly "national". I have a few more names in my files but guess they are totally unheard of outside Chile.



#5 Richard Jenkins

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Posted 01 November 2017 - 22:32

Juan Carlos Carbonell had a spell in the early days of the IRL whilst Ramiro Scuncio, Salazar's protege, may well have achieved more but for his tragically early death.

Edited by Richard Jenkins, 01 November 2017 - 22:35.


#6 nexfast

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Posted 03 November 2017 - 00:54

I forgot another important name, Emilio Karstulovic, who drove in the twenties, thirties and forties and was the first Champion of Argentina back in 1934. Born in what is now Croatia and arrived as child in Chile he was also a journalist and a resident of Argentina.



#7 Charlieman

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Posted 03 November 2017 - 12:35

What is the most southerly permanent racing venue in Chile? Further south than Teretonga at Invercargill?



#8 Alan Lewis

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Posted 03 November 2017 - 13:28

What is the most southerly permanent racing venue in Chile? Further south than Teretonga at Invercargill?



#9 Alan Lewis

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Posted 03 November 2017 - 13:30

The Carlos Romero track in Tolhuin, Terra del Fuego is further south than Teretonga (...Wikipedia says...), but it's in Argentina.

APL

(edit...oops! Made a mess of posting that
...)

Edited by Alan Lewis, 03 November 2017 - 13:31.


#10 wenoopy

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Posted 04 November 2017 - 10:10

There is a circuit at Cabo Negro, Chile, located just north of Punta Arenas Airport, and just south of an oil/gas terminal installation. Google "Autodromo Cabo Negro" and you will be able to click onto a number of recent racing photos on what is a fairly basic circuit, but with permanent facilities. This would be the most southern circuit in Chile, but the 2 circuits in the Argentine portion of Tierra Del Fuego - Rio Grande and Tolhuin - would be further south. These are way further south than any part of New Zealand.

 

Stu Buchanan



#11 Geoff E

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Posted 04 November 2017 - 11:29

There is a circuit at Cabo Negro, Chile,


It's possible to "drive" (EDIT: part of) a lap on Google Maps http://tinyurl.com/y8prl38b

Edited by Geoff E, 04 November 2017 - 11:31.


#12 Vitesse2

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Posted 05 November 2017 - 15:34

Nexfast mentioned Raúl Jaras above. Here's a picture of him with some Argentinian chap, from a recent article on the Chilean Autovelox website:

 

3.jpg?resize=1024%2C797

Raúl “Papín” Jaras, la leyenda del TC chileno

 

 

 



#13 AndrewAbbott

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Posted 23 May 2024 - 08:30

The Autódromo Alto Bonito (Chinquihue) no longer exists. It was located here (https://www.google.c...3616,649m/data=!3m1!1e3?entry=ttu) but has since been built over (in the late 2000s, I might add).



#14 FlyingSaucer

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Posted 23 May 2024 - 13:48

Since this post has been resurrected, I can contribute by talking a little about the Chilean GP, ​​which took place in 1950 and was (is), without a doubt, the most important motorsport event that took place in the country (till this day).

 

The majority of pilots who competed in the race were Latin Americans, especially Argentines, like Froilan González, J.M. Fangio, Onofre Marimón and Carlos Menditeguy. Some drivers shared the cars in the race (smt peculiar for a F. Libre GP race) and the only great international star on the event was Louis Rosier.

 

I plan (in the next month or two) to release a complete story about this race tbh, with details regarding the full spectrum of it, from organization of the meeting to the contest itself. So, if anyone is interested in the subject, just wait a little bit. I can even post the link in this discussion thread, if desired.



#15 Sterzo

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Posted 23 May 2024 - 16:36

So, if anyone is interested in the subject, just wait a little bit. I can even post the link in this discussion thread, if desired.

If? What do you mean "if"? Abandon your job, your family and your bodily needs. Your audience is waiting.



#16 BRG

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Posted 23 May 2024 - 18:03

Since I started this thread back in 2017, Chile has hosted the WRC twice in 2019 and 2023 with a COVID cancelled event in 2021.  It looks like a great event, with fast smooth gravel roads a bit reminiscent of Wales.



#17 Disco Stu

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Posted 24 May 2024 - 13:25

Surprised there's been no mention of Dakar, where Chile played a prominent role for a decade



#18 FlyingSaucer

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Posted 24 May 2024 - 17:55

If? What do you mean "if"? Abandon your job, your family and your bodily needs. Your audience is waiting.

 

Patience its the key my men   ;)

 

My plan was really to publish it as soon as possible, but first I have another project on the 'release list'. I can guarantee u one thing: I have no shortage of stories - the space to publish them is what is my handbrake!