Neste Oil Rally Helsinki Battle – a unique urban rally on 26 July
Neste Oil has been the title sponsor of the FIA World Rally Championship rally held in Finland for the past 20 years. To celebrate this year’s anniversary, Neste Oil is to bring a headline rally event to Helsinki this summer that will see some legendary drivers from the past taking on some of today’s stars on a street circuit in the center of the city. The teams due to take part in the Neste Oil Rally Finland in Jyväskylä the following week will also be present in a special enclosure in Hietalahti.
“Juho Hänninen and Thierry Neuville from the Hyundai Motorsport team will be taking part,” says Neste Oil’s Marketing Director, Sirpa Tuomi. “We will also have Sébastien Ogier and Jari-Matti Latvala from the Volkswagen team as well as Mads Østberg from the Citroën team. Markku Alén, Tommi Mäkinen, Juha Kankkunen, and Marcus Grönholm will represent the past greats of the sport.
“We wanted to celebrate 20 years of being the title sponsor of the WRC’s Finnish rally by bringing the thrill of rallying to the heart of Helsinki. Our aim is to create an event that the whole family can enjoy and where everyone can see WRC cars up close and meet some legendary drivers together with some of today’s stars,” continues Tuomi.
“It has been fantastic to see the great reception the event has received from both today’s leading rally teams and the legendary drivers who have agreed to take part. The fact that the city authorities have also been so excited about the event has also been great, and they have offered us a unique location to stage it,” says Tuomi.
“This is a great way to open the rally week, which peaks with the world championship rally in Jyväskylä. It serves to show off top-line rally competition in an interesting and compact environment to people perhaps not normally reached by Neste Oil Rally Finland,” explains Tiina Lehmonen, CEO of rally organizer AKK Sports Ltd.
Helsinki’s Mayor, Jussi Pajunen, has agreed to act as patron for the event.
“The City of Helsinki is always glad to welcome major events that are aimed at a broad audience,” says Marja-Leena Rinkineva, the city’s Director of Economic Development. “Our goal is to ensure that Helsinki in the summer has a lot to offer everyone, including tourists from abroad, and the Neste Oil Rally Helsinki Battle fits in with this aim very well.”
The event is expected to attract tens of thousands of spectators and everyone interested in cleaner fuels, rallying, and seeing an exciting line-up of drivers that includes both some of today’s leading competitors and some legends of the sport. The event will be free of charge.
Source: Neste Oil Corporation