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Formula One Makes Jerusalem Circuit Encore

October 10, 2014

“Rejoice with Jerusalem and be glad for her, all you who love her; rejoice greatly with her, all you who mourn over her.”  (Isaiah 66:10)

The streets of Jerusalem were closed for two days this week as the second annual non-competitive Jerusalem Formula One Road Show sent roaring supercars coursing around some of Judaism’s holiest sites.

Roads around the Old City of Jerusalem closed between noon and 9 p.m. on both Monday and Tuesday as about 300,000 Israelis lined the streets to watch international race-car and stunt drivers.

Formula 1 race cars speeding through the streets of Jerusalem thrill spectators.

Formula-1 race cars speeding through the streets of Jerusalem thrill spectators.

Motorcycle stunt rider Rafal Pasierbek found the crowd’s energy invigorating.

“It was one of the best events I’ve ever been to,” he said.  “The huge crowd today gave me the adrenaline to do harder tricks; I just put my fear in my pocket and went with my adrenaline.”

Jerusalem’s mayor, Nir Barkat, called the show an investment in the city’s future.

“We were forced to postpone the event due to Operation Protective Edge this summer, but we were determined to resume our routine in Jerusalem,” Barkat said, emphasizing the need to strengthen the city after recent criticisms by the White House and European Union.  (JPost)

“This is a message to the whole world that Jerusalem is an open and inviting city—a city of culture and sport,” stated Barkat, who is himself a former race-car driver.  “Our aim is to bring back as many tourists as we can to Jerusalem, and we are expecting many visitors over the Sukkot holiday period.”

“The pictures of the Formula One cars racing through our streets sends an international message that Jerusalem is an open, welcoming city in which sport and entertainment are enjoyed by residents and tourists alike,” he said.

Yarin Stern, Sara Netanyahu, Alon Day, Marco Cioci

Israeli race-car driver Yarin Stern stands to the left of Sara Netanyahu.  To her right are Alon Day and Marco Cioci.

One event sponsor, Eugene Kaspersky, said the event helped to bring local Jerusalem communities together.

“Motorsport unites people all over the world,” the Kaspersky Lab CEO said, with the Jerusalem race bringing dozens of international teams and their Porsches, Ferraris and Audis to where the rubber meets the road.  (Arutz 7)

This event marks the first year that a homegrown team brought Israeli-flag racing stripes to the road, with drivers Roy Nissany, Yarin Stern and Bar Baruch piloting single seaters and Alon Day steering a German GT Masters series.

“You have to realize there’s been no [competitive] motorsport in Israel in the past 50 years,” Day said.  (Times of Israel)

“This is something extremely big, and will give a really big boost to Israeli motorsport,” he said.

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