Skijoring among Austrian ice racing highlights

Don’t try this at home: High-powered cars pulling skiers on ice and snow

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skijoring
Freestyle skier Aksel Lund Svindal catches a tow behind Dakar Rally-winning Porsche during ice racing weekend in Austria | GP Ice Race photos

A record of nearly 16,000 people turned out this past weekend in Zell am See an Kaprun, Austria, for the second GP Ice Race weekend, presented as “Woodstock on Ice” and promoted by Porsche scion Ferdinand Porsche and his Greger Porsche Classic Cars dealership partner, Vinzenz Greger.

While featuring an assortment of vintage racing cars on snow- and ice-covered tracks, one of the highlights is the sport of skijoring, in which a skier is pulled along, once upon a time by a horse but now by automobiles.

That’s quite a tow vehicle: Freestyle skier Benedikt Mayr competes in the Skijoring event

Featured this year was Austrian skier Marcel Hirscher, a two-time Olympic gold medalist and seven-time World champion, who took turns both trailing behind a 580-horsepower Red Bull-sponsored Audi S1 EKS WRX quattro and also at the car’s steering wheel.

Another skiing star Frank Woerndl, did runs trailing behind a 1955 DKW F91 while using skis nearly as old as the car. Norwegian skier Aksel Lund Svindal also did some runs behind the Porsche 911 Carrera 4×4 (953) that won the Dakar Rally.

Skoda staged an “Ice Race of Champions” pitting 2019 European Junior rally champion Filip Mares of the Czech Republic, Slovakian champion Martin Koci, German champion Fabian Kreim and Austrian runner-up Julian Wagner in identical Skoda Fabia Rally2 evos. After two days of races, Kreim edged Wagner for the overall victory.

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Buggy-style vehicle makes a run on the snow-covered track
Tanner Foust drifts a souped-up VW Beetle
This Saab story looks like it’s participants are pretty happy

Another highlight of the weekend was rallycross star Tanner Foust drifting in a Volkswagen Beetle R. Stig Blomqvist, the 1984 World Rally Champion, drove the iconic Audi Sport quattro S1, and Le Mans winner Benoit Treluyer was among those driving an Audi RS5 DTM.

The 1976 Jagermeister Formula 1 March-Cosworth 741 was outfitted with studded dualie Pirelli tires for driver Jans-Joachim Stuck.

The actually racing involved nearly 150 cars in eight classes, from classics to modern rally cars.

The scene at Zell am See
Waiting for their turns on the snowy track
New electric-powered Porsche Taycans get to play, too

 

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A former daily newspaper sports editor, Larry Edsall spent a dozen years as an editor at AutoWeek magazine before making the transition to writing for the web and becoming the author of more than 15 automotive books. In addition to being founding editor at ClassicCars.com, Larry has written for The New York Times and The Detroit News and was an adjunct honors professor at the Walter Cronkite School of Journalism and Mass Communication at Arizona State University.

1 COMMENT

  1. And where was Ken Block?! This sort of shenanigans looks exactly his sort of party- and an historic F1 car on studded dualies for Jans-Joachim Stuck?! Hokey smokes!
    Sign me up for next year, please?

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