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DTM at Helsinki: the track


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#1 Teapot

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Posted 06 September 2004 - 20:19

I'm looking for information about the street circuit in Helsinki that was used by DTM and ITC in 1995 and 1996 (and by Fia Gt in 1997, as well) : I had already looked at Guido De Carli's site (wonderful), but didn't succeed in recognising wich streets were actually part of the track (the maps are in a quite low resolution).
I've made some suppositions...(near Ruoholahti...maybe?) and all them are wrong (I've been in Helsinki only once and only for 10 days)! So I beg for the help of some "indigenous" TNF dweller!

Kiitos!

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#2 MCS

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Posted 06 September 2004 - 20:34

Forgive me for asking this Teapot but, in light of the recent "Nurburgring" thread, wasn't this German incursion of Finnish motor sport somewhat resented ??? ;)

Perhaps not, but whatever, you're not a "Gong" fan are you? :stoned: Flying teapot and all that?

MCS

#3 ehagar

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Posted 06 September 2004 - 21:00

Did you try Darren's site?

http://www.silhouet....s/helsinki.html

#4 Muzza

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Posted 06 September 2004 - 22:06

Or, if you cannot read the map at Darren's website, try Dan King's Racing Circuits that, on this page, offers this link to a Multimap.com page with the location of the track.

#5 Teapot

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Posted 07 September 2004 - 07:11

Thank you, Muzza! As I said, my previous suppositions were completely wrong (some 2km away from the actual location...in other words, almost on the opposite side of the city)!

And MCS...of course I'm Gong-addicted! Daevid Allen Rules! :drunk:

#6 Spunout

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Posted 07 September 2004 - 13:45

Helsinki Thunder races were very succesful. I recall 1996 there were 123.000 spectators (?). Not bad!

#7 BRG

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Posted 07 September 2004 - 15:40

Originally posted by MCS
wasn't this German incursion of Finnish motor sport somewhat resented

Remember that the DTM at the time included the Rosberg Opel team plus JJ Lehto behind the wheel, so there was plenty of home interest.

#8 Leif Snellman

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Posted 08 September 2004 - 06:00

Originally posted by Spunout
Helsinki Thunder races were very succesful.


Considering I was unable to find a ticket for the Sunday race in 1995 and had to settle for qualifying only, it couldn't have been too bad.  ;)

In 1997 the idiotic Robert Lappalainen changed ticket dealer from an establised one to a "by phone only" one, starting their business that same day. Of course it could be profitable to have the customer to wait at the phone for 40 minutes with the minutes ticking off at 2 Fmk per minute but in the end that greed backfired completely, (especially as it took another 40 minutes to print out the ticket when you went to clame it). Totally amateurish! :mad: Then Robert Lappalainen had the guts to blame everything on the F3000 race, claiming that FIA had forced him to include it in the programme and that the Finns aren't interesting in Formula racing! Considering that the F3000 race was hardly even mentioned in the advertising, Lappalainen concentrating totally on the Fia GT instead, that was complete bulls**t. (The F3000 teams also said after the race that they had never been treated so badly before in their life and they would think twice before returning.) Lappalainen had also promised a GT field of some 30-40 cars. Well, the race happened a week or two before Le Mans so you guess what happened.

Anyway, here is a map:

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1 Eläintarha/Djurgården
Racing 1932-1963

2 Munkkiniemi/Munksnäs
Racing 1932

3 Kalastajatorppa/Fiskartorpet
Racing 1937

4 Käpylä/Kottby
Trotting track. Dirt track in the 30s - 50s

5 Sörnäinen/Sörnäs
1995-97, Formula 3000, DTM, ITC, GT

Keimola/Käinby is off map some 20 Km North of downtown.

#9 Rob29

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Posted 08 September 2004 - 06:16

Thanks for that story,Leif.I always wondered why F3000/GT was that much less popular than DTM! A good promoter should be able to get that one going again?

#10 Muzza

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Posted 08 September 2004 - 14:53

I'll follow Rob29's lead: your words were very clarifying, Leif.

The sudden demise of the (in general terms) very successful races at the Helsinki port always mystified me. The racing press of the time - Eurosport, Autosport, Sport-Auto - were just short of calling Robert Lappalainen a marketing and promotions genius, but I should have been smarter and realize from previous experiences that what race promoters do well is to promote themselves...

Noticeably, I also recall that the several Formula 3000 teams complained that they had never worked under such poor conditions - many of them had no compressed air nor water in their pits; I also understood from a former F-3000 mechanic that the "control of the power switch was in hands of someone probably turning it on and off at will". Also, wasn't Yannick Dalmas who said had never seen so much people - with or without credentials - in the pit area?

These sort of comments surprised me. They contradicted what I could see on tv and read on magazines - that the race was a major success in all aspects -, but now Leif sheds a little more light onto that. Probably there were a lot of errors (quite normal in the first years of a race, particularly when ran in a temporary circuit - don't even tell me, I know that first hand...) that were not corrected as much effort was put on PR-ing and self-promotion. Oh well, we have seen that time and again.

This is quite a pity: Finland does deserve other major international racing events besides the traditional WRC stop. New Zealand is the only other nation to have a Formula 1 world champion to have never held a Formula 1 race (valid for the World Championship). And the Finnish fans are great (had the pleasure of meeting several nice fellows in the Belgian GP, American GP and other races). Personally I would much prefer to see a Formula 1 race there rather then in Kozumenistan, grabbed thanks to the local laws regarding tobacco sponsorship...

#11 Teapot

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Posted 08 September 2004 - 18:23

[I] Originally posted by Leif Snellman [/|]

here is a map

Thank you for the map, Leif...it saves me from further work to locate the other tracks in Helsinki's area.

#12 Leif Snellman

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Posted 08 September 2004 - 21:09

This was the reason for the bad economical results last year as seen from my point of view that of course can be flawed. But a fact is, the last year, there was huge gaps in the stands. A major problem for future of the race, apart from the economical one, was that the track surface, proved too rough for racing and would have to be replaced with a more smooth one. Especially the F3000 cars were in trouble with a lot of crashes and pace car situatinos. Now, with the track being on a normal street with quite heavy traffic, summer and winter, this was a quite serious problem as the track would feel stud tires, snow ploughs etc. all the winter. The city wasn't keen on paying a new special surface each year so ...

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