Swedish Grand Prix Betting

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Although Scandinavia has been the source of many accomplished and successful Formula One drivers over the years, there is only one country in that region that has ever hosted an F1 Grand Prix World Championship event—Sweden. Between 1973 and 1978, six editions of the Swedish Grand Prix were conducted as part of seasonal calendar approved by the Fédération Internationale de l’Automobile (FIA). But those were certainly not the first editions of this pioneering Northern European event.

In 1931, the inaugural “Swedish Winter Grand Prix” was held near Lake Rämen on a daunting 46-kilometre circuit. Lap times approached 35 minutes. Then, the very first “Swedish Summer Grand Prix” was run in 1933. It took place at the 29.7-kilometre Norra Vram Circuit in Skåne County under the auspices of the Kungliga Automobilklubben (the Royal Automobile Club). On 6 August, 22 cars started out to complete a dozen laps, but seven of them were eliminated in a pile up on the opening lap, injuring two drivers seriously and killing a traveling mechanic. By the end of the race, just seven vehicles were still in contention, with Italy’s Antonio Brivio taking the checkered flag in his Alfa Romeo Monza.

During the next 15 years, through World War II until 1948, no Swedish Grand Prix was conducted at all, and for the next 23 years after that, the race was held only intermittently. Skarpnäck Airfield outside Stockholm was used as an auto racing circuit for the 1948 Stockholm Grand Prix, a Formula Two race, and the following year it hosted the Swedish Summer Grand Prix won by B. Bira of Thailand in a Maserati. Just two more Grand Prix events were held at Skarpnäck—both won by Swedish drivers—the 1952 race claimed by Gunnar Carlsson and the 1953 event won by Erik Lundgren.

The next venue used for the Swedish Grand Prix was the Rabelöfsbanan Circuit at Kristianstad in Skåne County, where Team Ferrari’s duo of Frenchman Maurice Trintignant and American Phil Hill won in 1952. They were followed in 1953 by the Team Maserati pairing of Stirling Moss from England and Jean Behra of France.

In 1967, Jackie Stewart of Great Britain won the Swedish Grand Prix at Karlskoga Motorstadion, also known as Gelleråsen. Located six kilometres north of Karlskoga in Örebro County, it has since become the oldest permanent motorsport race track in Sweden. Stewart’s victory, like all of those preceding it, was not part of the FIA World Championships, but it would be the last unofficial race before Sweden was added to the F1 racing calendar.

Coming into 1973, race fans in Sweden were enthralled by local phenomenon Ronnie Petersen who, despite never having won a championship event, was ranked among the top ten drivers in the world. It was largely due to his popularity that the country joined FIA’s rotation as the seventh leg of the 15-race F1 season. The course selected for the nation’s inaugural Formula One World Championship was the Scandinavian Raceway, a 4.03-kilometre motorsport race track at Anderstorp in Jönköping County.

Petersen had the pole position as the race got under way on 17 June and he led the field for 79 of the 80 scheduled laps. But on the very last lap, New Zealand’s Denny Hulme zoomed to the front and overtook the leader to win by four seconds, denying the local favourite the joy of winning in front of his countrymen. Instead, Petersen would get his first victory at the following race in France.

In 1974~1978, five more editions of the Swedish Grand Prix were staged at Anderstorp. South Africa’s Jody Scheckter took two of them, in 1974 and 1976, while Niki Lauda matched that feat with victories in 1975 and 1978. The 1977 edition went to Jacques Laffite of France. Petersen would win nine more F1 events before his death following a crash at the 1978 Italian Grand Prix at Monza. That same season, Swedish F1 racer Gunnar Nilsson died of cancer, and Sweden lost its enthusiasm for motor sports. The Swedish Grand Prix planned for 1979 was cancelled and the event has never been revived.

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