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Rallying in Finland - numbers

3657 Views 27 Replies 17 Participants Last post by  Gruppe B
The conversation on JV's post further down the forum reminded me that I had this information about rallying in Finland that illustrates just how popular it is over there. Read on and just try to imagine these figures. I got these links and info on the world rally forums, particularly from user Riitta (thanks!). Most of these links are in Finnish, but you can get the general idea...

There are maybe 50-60 rallies a year, with maximum entries of 220 cars (Riitta explained that usually the entries vary between 80 and 220) :eek: Look at these pages and see ("osanottajat" is the entry list). I think those are organized by month and day:

http://www.mantta.fi/yritykset/tenab/kale2002.htm (to see other years just change the year on the link)

This page details the competitor and car stats:


Look at the kinds of cars... not quite prorally material :)

Also, I understand that these lines are the number of actual competitors for the year (first line drivers and second line codrivers, last column totals - 1901 drivers and 2337 codrivers :eek: ):

1-ohjaajia yhteensä 726 38% 448 24% 727 38% 1901
2-ohjaajia yhteensä 562 24% 487 21% 1288 55% 2337

The main page for this site - http://www.mantta.fi/yritykset/tenab/

BTW, JV or Topi, why are Toyota Starlets so popular for rallying over there, what with their tiny wheelbases?

I guess this can be filed under "curiosity", but there must be at least a little something that we can learn from them on how to attract more people to rallying? BTW, some of the Finnish guys in the forum believe (and I tend to agree with them) that the secret of their success is in quantity of competitors and level of competition.

LOL, I feel like I am talking about some fantasy rallying land in middle-earth (Lord of The Rings).

This would probably make for an interesting Specialstage.com editorial (if only I had the time)...
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It is interesting to read other on-line forums to learn the perceptions about rallying in the USA. I think this quote sums it up pretty good:

"I want to try out some rallycrosses, but full on rallying is VERY expensive and time consuming."

Somehow we have taken a sport that back in my dad's time you could buy a decent 510 or in his case Colt do some minor work to it, still drive it to work during the week and then rally it a few times a year, into a VERY expensive sport with very fast cars that you would not drive to work.

To some extent this perception is due to the focus on only the fastest cars by the SCCA head office. There is almost nothing that says you can participate, you can afford to join the fun without spongers. The sport is being promoted as a profession not a hobby, but the reality of the situation is there is not enough money in the sport to make it a profession so it is becoming a sport of the wealthy with a few odd sponsored cars mixed in.

Another reason is the total lack of support for beginners, it took me almost a year to get my 2nd rally car log booked as when I called around to the officials I got a name for someone 2 hours away who was never avaible. Not once in all my efforts did anyone point out the 3 other people who could log book the car with in 15 min of my house. (my first car was so long ago it pre-dates log books)

I expect Finland has a mentioning program for young or new drivers, I also expect they promote the idea of go out have some fun see what you can do, then and only if you do well should you look to make it into a professional effort. We need to do the same.

Derek Bottles
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The USA can have a geat future in the world of rallying the sport can grow here and we can produce drivers who can compete at the top leavels of the sport. The fins are not garenteed some set percentage of wins at the world level.

Step one, set up some very compeative low cost classes such as Gp222 and promote them as the place to be for close hard fought compitition. Promote them as affordable simple straight forward classes.

Sept two, use some of the tv time to dramitize the personalities and the close battles in these classes. Sure show the factory teams since they are paying, but make an effort to show that the sport is assable to the average working person and the real fights are in the later running clases. Heck little things like giving the biggest trophy to the winner in the class with the most entries sends the right message. Also a trophy for best performance not best overall finish. Poss hold rallys that do not have Open & N classes present.

Step three Make a big deal about regonial championships. Lowers the cost and gets drivers more seat time.
Step Four, set up local clubs that can mentor people new to the sport.

Becoming fast requires good competition, seat time, and the mental state of a champion. The Finns have the first 2 in droves and the top driver have the late part too.
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