Janne Laitinen sets 206.1 mph ice speed record in an Audi RS6
Less than a month after four-time Finnish rally champ Juha Kankkunen broke the ice speed record in a Bentley Continental Supersports Convertible, setting a new speed of 205.5 mph, fellow Finnish driver Janne Laitinen has now broken that record.
Laitinen, a test driver for tire manufacturer Nokian Tires, piloted an Audi RS6 on the frozen Gulf of Bothnia near Oulu, Finland to a top speed of 206.1 mph and in doing so set a new ice speed record.
The RS6 was completely stock except for its tires, which were swapped with Nokian Hakkapeliitta 7 studded rubber measuring 255 mm all ‘round. The Bentley Kankkunen was previously driving was also wearing studded tires: Pirelli SottoZero II tires measuring 275 mm.
Nokian, based in Finland, claims to have developed the world´s first winter tire for subzero conditions in 1934, and two years later introduced its Hakkapeliitta line of tires, designed specifically for northern winters. The firm regularly tests tires at high speeds at its facilities in Ivalo, Finland, about 186 miles north of the Arctic Circle.
The Guinness World Records group outlines detailed rules for ice driving world records. They take in the time for a 0.62 mile distance, which is taken for driving in both directions of the track, and the world record time is the average of the two results. The vehicle takes a flying start and the ice has to be natural and may not be roughed up or treated with any chemicals. The tires must be commercially available and approved for road traffic in the country in which the record attempt takes place.