Tapiola Race&Rally Club (a general auto-sport club established in 1964, and known better as the club of Marcus Grönholm, the World Rally Champion) together with Slotracing 2000 Club (a special club established just for this venue) organized, for the first time in Finland, slot-racing´s ISRA World Championships in Helsinki.

For the race we got the brand-new 8-lane and 37 meters long track from the nearby Hyvinkää Slot Racing Club, lap counting came from Kouvola Modelcar Club and several helping hands from clubs all over the country.

The race main sponsors were Kauppakeskus Itäkeskus (largest shopping mall in Scandinavia, that´s where the race was held), Scalextric, Lelulaatikko Toy Shop, Manchester Steak House and Katariina Restaurant and Sharp Business Machines.

Our main task, besides making a good race for the drivers of course, was to show that this traditional (Finnish Championships since 1964) type of modelcar racing is alive and well, and we wanted publicity, in order to get a permanent site for slotcar track in the Helsinki region.

We had over 100 drivers from 12 countries (SWE, EST, LAT, LIT, RUS, CZE, SVK, ITA, GBR, POR, CAN, FIN), driving in 4 classes, with a grand total of 250 slotcars.

Production-24 Team Race on Monday 16th, final results:
1) Fyhr E/Fyhr M, FIN, 433,62 laps in 40 minutes 2) Rage-Ragis/Podosinoviks, LAT 421,89 3) Horky/Korec, CZE, 420,59 4) Gooding/Harwood, GBR, 415,33 5) Toropainen/Porttinen, FIN, 409,24 6) Saunders/Mossetti, GBR/CAN, 402,83 7) Ruks/Taurins, LAT, 402,58 8) Lapcak/Prokop, SVK, 401,93
43 teams participated in Team Race.

Formula1-32 on Wednesday 18th, final results:
1) Horky Vladimir, CZE, 449,16 laps in 40 minutes 2) Korec Josef, CZE, 442,87 3) Trigilio, ITA, 437,34 4) Folk, CZE, 434,88 5) Harwood, GBR, 428,42 6) Poledna, CZE, 424,42 7) Krcil, CZE, 417,42 8) Niccolai, ITA, 411,89
Formula1-32 class had 54 drivers.

Eurosport-32 on Thursday 19th with very much czech final results:
1) Horky Vladimir, CZE,523,98 laps in 40 minutes 2) Poledna, CZE, 515,45 3) Radkovic, CZE, 503,05 4) Korec Josef, CZE, 497,88 5) Folk, CZE, 496,32 6) Rautama, FIN TapUA, 483,13 7) Korec Jan, CZE, 474,49 8) Vojtik, CZE, 456,05
This smaller Eurosport class had 70 drivers.

Eurosport-24 – the fastest in whole venue – on Saturday 21st :
1) Korec Josef, CZE, 592,65 laps in 40 minutes 2) Poledna Frantisek, CZE, 565,40 3) Fyhr Einari, FIN, 561,40 4) Vojtik Antonin, CZE, 558,16 5) Hojer Milos, CZE, 551,22 6) Mitchell Geoff, GBR, 518,00 7) Kairistola Simo, FIN, 489,63 8) Mossetti Ernie, CAN, 303,00
Larger Eurosport class had 83 drivers, with one girl, the Czech Gorronova, on place 53.

Qualification one-lap track-record was set in Eurosport-24 class as 3.427 seconds by Canadian Ernie Mossetti. It makes an average speed of 38,8 kph, or scale-speed of about 190 kph (multiplication by square root of scale).

On Saturday we also had a ”Celebrity Race” with Ms.Annika Metsäketo (TV show-star), Mr.Arto Bryggare (Helsinki Town Council delegate), Mr.Tomi Tuominen (TV formula-1 commentator), mr.Jaakko Rytsölä (it-millionaire and Lamborghini owner), Mr.Erkki Patiala (president of Finnish Automobile Club and Espoo City technical director) and Mr.Jukka Westerback (race director of Helsinki DTM street-races just a few years back), who ultimately won the race - no wonder because he raced slotcars in the 70´s.

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Did we have the publicity we wanted for slotracing? Yes, the venue was covered by two major TV-channel sports news, as well as both national and local radio stations. It was held on the early Christmas shopping season and thousands –literally- of spectators could see competition slotcars in action during the week. But do we have a slotcar track now in Helsinki? No, the rent prices are still prohibitive - but the track we loaned is in Hyvinkaa, only some 50 km´s away.

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text by ilkka mannio

(foto © Sami Lindgren/TapUA):