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When the runway is not for taking off

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With the International St Moritz Auto Week in full swing, let’s look back at the first of the events in the famous Swiss ski resort: the Kilomètre Lancé.

ISAW, short for the Internationale St Moritzer Automobil Wochen, is bundling seven events in one magical week in the Swiss Alps. The week kicked off with the Kilomètre Lancé, a 1-kilometre-drag race on the runway of the Sankt Moritz airfield.

Photo ISAW


Even though the weather did its best to dampen the mood, participants showed a little rain couldn’t deter them. In total 65 cars and motorcycles participated in a timed run against the clock. One of the more remarkable participants was Herman Layher who had brought out the 1909 ‘Blitzenbenz’ Mercedes record car from his car museum in Sinsheim, Germany. The car first ran the Kilomètre Lancé with a streamlined bodywork and has in the meantime been switched to a different body for the Bernina hill climb this weekend.

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Photo Christian Lienhard

Bike beats car

One of the Porsche 959s at the start managed a 1-kilometre-run in a little over 23 seconds, just 2 seconds shy of what the magazine ‘Auto, Motor & Sport’ registered when it road-tested a 959 on the same distance. At a lower altitude, we must say. The fastest time of the day went to Marco Niggli on a BMW S 1000 RR motorcycle who clocked the 1 km in 18.06 seconds, beating a Ferrari 296 GTB in the process.

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