Finland is a nation that has produced a multitude of motor racing stars in several field of the sport. So, it is surprising that it isn’t endowed with an illustrious history of hosting events. But all that could change with the KymiRing, as the circuit nears completion.
Apart from the WRC Rally Finland, Finland have never hosted an F1 Grand Prix. All this in spite of having three World Champions in Keke Rosberg, Mika Hakkinen and Kimi Raikkonen. In addition to that, they have five different race winners, including the aforementioned and Valtteri Bottas and Heikki Kovalainen.
The last time there was a Finnish Grand Prix, was in 1986 at the semi-street circuit at Imatra.
However, there will soon be a brand new venue in 2020 with the provisional inclusion of the KymiRing. The track will be broken in when it plays host to the first MotoGP event in the Nordic nation for almost 30 years.
A Finnish Grand Prix was hinted at, long before the KymiRing was born, though it holds an undated spot on the 2020 MotoGP calendar. With the construction progress evident, a few riders were given the chance to turn its first laps.
Among them was local rider Mika Kallio, armed with a camera-equipped KTM which gave fans a nice look of what to expect if and when the series visits.
Though the depth perception from the high-set gyro flattens and widens the layout quite a lot like some odd stop-motion animation – not least because the track is supposed to retained elevation changes – you get a sense it is a flowing, fast circuit, similar to Mugello in Italy.
The back straight though is seemingly almost as long as the main straight in Losail, Qatar. The location of the circuit places it around 136km north of Helsinki, not too far from the border with Russia.
In addition to that, the KymiRing is also a Grade A F1 circuit, though it is only contracted to MotoGP until 2024. However, the Finnish motorsports governing body (AKK) is in talks with Liberty Media to gauge if a F1 race is feasible.