.. And to celebrate the fact, Neste Oil, the main sponsor of Rally Finland did a publicity stunt and brought the rally cars to the city of Helsinki. The idea was to build a nice small street track (c.850m) on which current rally drivers and older legends would drive upon. The legends being guys like Kankkunen, Mäkinen, Grönholm etc. and of course current drivers include guys like Mads Östberg, Sebastian Ogier and Finns Latvala and Hirvonen.
The weather was totally perfect for the event and there was quite a large crowd following the happenings. Almost +30Celsius was a bit demanding as there was not enough places with shade to watch from. A lot of water to keep hydrated was the only thing to do.
I had a dual purpose for this day. First to see some of my favorite drivers doing what they can do so well. As a Finn I grew up listening of and seeing the bravery of guys like Kankkunen, Vatanen, Alen as well as Henri Toivonen. To see those guys drive is always a great pleasure. Secondly as a photographer, this was a fun day to try to capture some of the speed of the day and improve my panning technique as well.
The photos above are to me OK, but not totally great. Unfortunately the amount of people meant that I could not get into a nice place to shoot so I was limited in many ways. I also found the cars to be really fast and thus hard to keep tracking and focusing upon. But anyways a lovely event, a great day. The weekend will show who is the fastest driver this year in Neste Oil Rally of Finland. I am hoping for it to be either VW driver Jari-Matti Latvala of Mikko Hirvonen. Last year the winner was ruling world-champ Sebastian Ogier from France (driving the VW).