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Sweden's Speed Weekend (Ice Racing!)

2705 Views 13 Replies 7 Participants Last post by  knuckleworks
Though you guys would get a kick out of this.

Last month my wife and I flew to Sweden to catch their annual "Speed Weekend." It's a lot like Bonneville's Speed Week but the runs are all made on a frozen lake and everyone's running spiked tires - some just run short studs while others go for the James Bond Villan version

I have some videos to post too, but I can't quite get the embedding to work, from YouTube or Flickr. Here's a link to the Flickr video gallery and I'll work on figuring out the embedding.

in the meantime, this is a cool pan down the line of racers and I'll throw some more photos up:
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I forgot any venue pics:

Parking Lot:

The track is on the right:

Looking back at the start line:


Waiting to go:

Yup, that's ice:
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Cool!! (literally!). Any speeds available? And where can I get some of them spiky tires for Bonneville?
I don't think the speeds get anywhere close to Bonneville (though you don't see too many pulse jets on skis on the salt):

The main site seems to be If your swedish is good you can make your way around the site. Or let google translate it for you.

Not surprisingly most of the tires seem pretty DIY. :D
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Forgive me for appearing ignorant but pulse jet equals heat equals ice melting equals ooops? Or did I miss something in my calculation?

I'd love to see the faces of the tech inspectors at Bonneville if you showed up with a pair of those tires!
That's some crazy shit, thanks for the pics!
These are some of the coolest pics I have seen.

a pulse jet is a pretty inefficient to melt ice , or propel a vehicle for that matter lol
Just LOVE that sweet little Triumph, did you get any more pics of her?
super cool! I love it! Here in pa. we race on ice in the winter with dirt bikes on frozen lakes. many many years ago we raced snowmobiles on the frozen river. we used self tap pin screws into knobby tires.I wish i could find the pics.....
i've got one more side view of the triumph:

I also did a write-up of the trip on my own site, and there you can click on the photos and they'll come up significantly larger. Or you can just grab them from the Flickr gallery. I wasn't sure about uploading a bunch of giant photos directly to the post.

I'm still not getting the video embed to work, but this is a link to the guy on the blue Kawasaki 750 taking a run. It's not super exciting, but about 7 seconds in you see his feet come off the pegs as he slips on the track.

The motorcycles tended to do really well off the line, as did the vintage and lo-horsepower cars. There were a few turbo charged porsches, subaru etc... that just tore up the start area trying to get traction. They just had way too much torque and couldn't lay the power down smoothly.

If you were going to seriously race here, I understand you actually want to detune pretty significantly from your normal setup.

Also, the course itself was pretty rough. They cleared it with regular road snow plows (not zambonis or anything) and if watch the video and look down the track you can see that it's pretty uneven).

I have a bad video of the pulse jet too. You'll notice a chain running out the back of the jet; that's connected to an old military 6x6 acting as ballast to keep the rocket from taking off. The guy pulls a release cable on the chain and that's when he moves off.

You'll also notice that there's music playing and announcers talking and then as soon as the jet fires up everything else goes silent and all you can hear is the pulsing. That's not because those other things stopped, that jet was so frickin' loud it was unbelievable.

None of the jets were as fast as you'd hope. There were a couple smaller ones too and they all made a lot of noise and i'm sure would be a blast to drive but in terms of performance...
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Also, as far as melting the ice. That was definitely a problem (though not from the pulse jet). In the morning all the ice (parking lot, walkways, track...) was pretty... "dry"? Not melty? I think you get the idea.

As the day wore on it didn't warm up very much but there was a lot of foot traffic and vehicle traffic and puddles and thin layers of water on top of the ice would form everywhere. I'm amazed that I managed to avoid a groin pull all day as i lost track of the number of times I'd lose my footing while walking around.

I think they only cleaned the track once during the day, pretty late in the day - I think before the big pulse jet was set to run. They had 5 or 6 snow plows that just drove up and down the track for about 20 minutes cleaning it off. Every once in a while they'd plow the walkway / driveway back to the pits and as more and more snow melted the snow plow would end up pushing a small wave of icy water either into the pits or towards the spectators or both.

It's hot and dusty at Bonneville but you're never going to be crouching down working on your bike and get the shock of ice cold water soaking the seat of your pants (though at bonneville that'd probably be pretty nice)

The only regret I have is that I wish we'd ended up talking to more people. Whenever we've gone to Bonneville you're striking up conversations with people all over the place. We found the Swedes to be super nice wherever we went (and almost EVERYBODY speaks fluent English) but they tend to be a little more reserved. Not unfriendly at all but less likely to wave you over and offer you a beer out the blue. And all I mean by that is that I wished I'd put a little more effort into starting up conversations - there were A LOT of amazing machines out there and it would have been nice to talk to the builders.

Couple more quick photos.

Know what's interesting about this bike (a Monark)

Maybe the skis he's got rigged up like outriggers:

Tow vehicle for one of the rockets and "pit bike":

How about this guy:

Check out the dash:

Or perhaps bigger? (tragically this guy didn't run on Saturday, so we didn't get to see it)
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More great photos!! Shame the big BBQ didn't run.
We found the Swedes to be super nice wherever we went (and almost EVERYBODY speaks fluent English) but they tend to be a little more reserved
great pics and i hope my country men gave you and friends a nice weekend so you come back,and your 100% correct we are reserved, unforunatly even to other swedes but this a heads up to all coming here,just say "hello or hej" and your of,simple as that :)

welcome back

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