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Season 2013: Portugal Supercar Seris & Finnish Rally Championship series

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Time of Event
Event name and location
Arctic Lapland Rally, Rovaniemi
FRC Vaakuna Rally, Mikkeli
ESC Aragon, Spain
ESC Estoril, Portugal
ESC Porto, Portugal
WRC Finland (Nelivetomies), Jyväskylä
ESC Portimao, Portugal
ESC Braga, Portugal
18.-20.10.2013 Rallye Sierra Morena, Cordoba Retirement Report

Season 2013 videos:
- Moose Hill test stage 2013
- Ylöjärvi Silver Road test stage 2013
- Hirvimäki Super2000 tests 2013
- FRC Vaakuna Rally 2013 - Incar SS1
- FRC Vaakuna Rally 2013 - Incar SS2
- FRC Vaakuna Rally 2013 - Incar SS3
- FRC Vaakuna Rally 2013 - Incar SS4
- FRC Vaakuna Rally 2013 - Incar SS5
- Crosskart Adventures Rantapirtti action 2013
- SuperCars Motorland Aragon 2013 Finnish TV
- SuperCars Estoril 2013 Finnish TV
- SuperCars Boavista 2013 Finnish TV
- Supercars Portimao 2013 Finnish TV
- Nelivetomies rally 2013 tests
- Nelivetomies rally 2013 Incar SS1: Jukojärvi
- Nelivetomies rally 2013 Incar SS2: Palsankylä
- Nelivetomies rally 2013 Incar SS3: Mökkiperä
- Nelivetomies rally 2013 Incar SS6: Surkee
- Nelivetomies rally 2013 Incar SS7: Leustu
- Nelivetomies rally 2013 Incar SS8: Ouninpohja
- Nelivetomies rally 2013 Incar SS9: Painaa
- Rallye Sierra Morena 2013 MikkoCam #1
- Rallye Sierra Morena 2013 MikkoCam #2
- Rallye Sierra Morena 2013 Incar SS9
- Rallye Sierra Morena 2013 Finnish TV

21.3.2013 - Team Novadriver presents 2013 line-up at Autódromo do Estoril

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Team Novadriver fulfilled its second session of Pré-Season Tests Autódromo Fernanda Pires Da Silva race track, and using the occasion to disclose the alignment of drivers for the 2013 season.

After carried the "shakedown" of the two Audi R8 LMS Ultra version 2013 in the Braga race track in the North of Portugal, the technical team of Team Novadriver goês South to Estoril and drew a program of tests where they try to find the best tune for the track and offer to the new drivers the first experience with the Audi R8 LMS Ultra 2013.

The Team Novadriver will be racing in the new FIA GT Series with Cesar Campaniço and Carlos Vieira, having as objective one place on top 5.

On the Portuguese GT Championsip, Team Novadriver will have two cars, one to Cesar Campaniço, Carlos Vieira and Mikko Eskelinen, the other with João Figueiredo, João Ramos and Antti Burin.

João Figueiredo fulfills the return to the Team Novadriver, where he was portuguese GT champion in 2010. João Ramos is a multifaceted driver, whose career already passed for many disciplines being a very fast driver. Antti Burri is a young Finnish, 2012 F.Ford champion, member of the Audi young drivers academy, and was send to Team Novadriver to accumulate experience in GT races.

Lining up drivers like the 2012 portuguese and spanish GT champions, the 2010 portuguese GT champion and the 2012 english F.Ford champion, Team Novadriver wants victorys and wining the titles in 2013 season.

Cesar Campaniço - "the tests had run here very well and i'm very satisfied for having two cars in the Portuguese GT Championship, thus fulfilling our part supporting the natiomal motorsport. I highlight the return home of João Figueiredo to Team Novadriver, the arrival of the João Ramos and the fact of the Audi Sport send us a young driver from is drivers academy. It is a clear sign of our growth as a team and the bigger notoriety of the Team Novadriver."

Carlos Vieira - "Testing went very well, I managed to find the best set-up for the car and the new specifications and could improve the fastest time of the Audi R8 LMS Ultra at the Estoril track. I look forward to the start of the competition. I am confident, because Team Novadriver is one of the best teams at European level and my double with Cesar Campanico is strong."

João Figueiredo - "It is a joy to return to Team Novadriver, top European team and where I debut in the GT class, winning the GT portuguese title in 2010. The Audi R8 LMS Ultra has evolved considerably since I left the team in 2010, but I believe the re-adaptation will be quick and that 2013 will be great."

João Ramos - "Finally found the conditions to be part of Team Novadriver, a team that always seemed very competent and that now that fulfill the first test, was fully confirmed. The Audi R8 LMS Ultra is very easy to ride and I always felt comfortable at the wheel, which is a good sign, so i'm very happy and confident for a great 2013 season."

Mikko Eskelinen - "Keep me in Team Novadriver was essential to continue my career after winning the spanish title with them. I accepted the challenge to compete in Portugal, teaming with César Campanico. The Estoril track seems simple but is very technical, but with the help of César and the technical team, managed to bring me the best times and I can only be confident for the 2013 season."

Antti Buri - "I am very pleased with the Team Novadriver, a very professional formation that is helping me a lot to adapt to the Audi R8 LMS Ultra, a car radically different of single seater cars i used. I'm here to learn and Team Novadriver is the right team for my development in GT races."

Mikko Eskelien international racing calendar 2013:
- 23.-24.03.2013 - Braga (Portugal)
- 27.-28.04.2013 - Aragorn (Spain)
- 25.-26.05.2013 - Estoril (Portugal)
- 29.-30.06.2013 - Porto (Portugal)
- 30.-31.08.2013 - Portimao (Portugali
- 05.-06.10.2013 - Imola (Italy)
- 16.-17.10.2013 - Rooma (Italy)

28.4.2013 - Mikko Eskelinen 2nd fastest in European SuperCar Series opening round at Spanish Aragon - Reigning Spanish Champion also on silver position in Portugalise Championship standings

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Flying Finn mr. Mikko Eskelinen, 40, ended his six months break from tarmac racing and got an excellent start for season 2013 and its' seven rounds of intense international racing. In first round of new European SuperCar Championship series, which was driven in North Spain at circuit of Aragón, Mikko and his portugalise Team Novadriver team mates César Campaniço sekä Carlos Vieira took second position in two hours race. After colorful events they were 39,97 seconds slower than winners.

Vieira had a perfect start from pole position and made a perfect run by bringing the car into drivers change by 20 seconds gap. Even Campaniço and Eskelinen also made perfect runs, italian Ferrari drivers Tanakorn Ramindra and Cedric Sbirrazzuoli took victory in questionable way. In two hours of racing the series regulations say that every team has to have minimum of five minutes pit stop. Winners didn't complete that time and due this the racing jury gave them just pit lane drive thru penalty and therefore the they won the race with such big gap.

Eskelinen wasn't worried about this because he knows that the serie organizers will make sure that this cannot be done again. In a five years of international racing career Eskelinen, who has won Spanish, Estonian and two Finnish Racing titles also knows that silver position is an excellent result in first race and from next six there are similar or even better success to be awaiting for the team.

- A very good start, good result and good points. Furthermore as from the second lap of practice session until final lap of my performance I was able to drive faster than my season 2012 fastest lap time I now know that my speed has also improved. I have a very good self-confidence for my driving as well as for the Team Novadriver professionals. Ofcourse a non-winning position is still a bit dissapointment but this is just motorsport, nothing more, Eskelinen tells.

- Team Novadriver has a very competitive package and therefore we're heading towards next rounds with a big smile. Furthermore as I got a news from France that another Flying Finn, mr. Simo Muhonen, age of 16, has driven his first-ever victory in French Formula F4 Championship series, I can travel back to chilly Finland with a good feelings, Eskelinen continues.

Second car of Team Novadriver, which was driven for example mr. Antti Buri, mr. João Ramos and mr João Figueiredo, were forced to retire the event due gearbox failure. Next round of the European Supercar Championship series is to be driven in third weekend of May at circuit of Estoril, near portugalise Lissabon.

Final results European SuperCars Series, Aragón (Spain)
1. Tanakorn Ramindra & Cedric Sbirrazzuoli, Ferrari 458 GT3, 2:00:19.896
2. Mikko Eskelinen & César Campaniço & Carlos Vieira, Team Novadriver Audi R8 LMS Ultra GT3, +39.970sec
3. Miguel Ferreira & Francisco Carvalho & Diogo Ferrão, Ferrari 430 Challenge, +7 laps
4. José Pedro Fontes & Miguel Barbosa, Mercedes SLS AMG GT3, +9 laps
5. João Baptista & Amândio Dias & Renato Machado, Porsche GT3 CUP, +15 laps
ret. João Ramos & João Figueiredo & Antti Buri, Team Novadriver Audi R8 LMS Ultra GT3, gearbox

26.5.2013 - Mikko Eskelinen victorious in SuperCar Estoril - Flying Finn continues to have strong performance on Iberian soil

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Reigning Spanish GT-Champion, Flying Finn mr. Mikko Eskelinen, 40, drove victory in SuperCar Estoril with portugalise Team Nova Driver Audi R8 LMS Ultra GT3. Together with portugalise team mates mr. César Campaniço and mr. Carlos Vieira Eskelinen dominated driving in Estoril 4,2 kilometres circuit. Team Nova Driver lead the race almost from start to finish.

Campaniço start the race from pole position and after 45 minutes of racing he delivered the steering wheel to Eskelinen in second position. After intense driving Mikko was able to put the team back to lead and third driver, mr. Carlos Vieira who secured the victory by 15 seconds gap in front of Team Nova Driver 2nd car which was driven my mr. João Figueiredo, mr. João Ramos and Manuel Gião.

Eskelinen was more than happy for the victory and especially for two good results of the season: Team has collected two podium positions from two starts. Previously four weeks ago in Spanish circuit of Aragon Team Nova Driver celebrated silver position and now they continued their campaign with a victory. Due perfect results Eskelinen and Team Nova Driver are now in SuperCar Portugal Championship series leadership and in second position at SuperCar European Championship series.

- In the event 15 seconds gap might feel easy but it definitely wasn't so. Cecar was able to have a good start but due intense driving was able to pass the leadership to Merceds driver mr. Luis Silva. During the pitstop we were able to gain the leadership and didn't give it away. For the whole two hours of racing there were a huge wind blowing at Atlantic and therefore driving with maximum speed was very challenging, Eskelinen tells.

- Championship leadership is according our plans and as now team has first and second positions in standings we're heading for the next round with comfortable feelings and ofcourse high hopes. I'm enjoying a lot to be able to drive in a professional racing team which makes huge effort for drivers to collect success. Same thing affects my sponsors and partners who have supported my long and successful career, shares Eskelinen thanks for his background team.

Final results SuperCar Portugal, Estoril
1. Mikko Eskelinen & César Campaniço & Carlos Vieira, Audi R8 LMS Ultra, 1:40,824
2. João Figueiredo & João Ramos & Manuel Gião, Audi R8 LMS Ultra 68 +15,148,2sec
3. Luis Silva & António Coimbra, Mercedes SLS AMG 67 +1 lap
4. António Nogueira & Pedro Salvador, Porsche 997 GT3, +1 lap
5. Diogo Ferrão & Miguel Ferreira & Francisco Carvalho, Ferrari 430, +5 lap

30.6.2013 - Mikko Eskelinen into superior victory at Boavista circuit of Portugal - Flying Finn is on flames at Ibearian soil

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Team Nova Driver Mikko Eskelinen, age of 40, and his team mates César Campaniço and Carlos Vieira drove fastest performance in Boavista street circuit in Portugalise Porto. In third round of European SuperCars series Audi R8 LMS Ultra GT3 drivers collect superior victory and increased their serier lead.

In two hours of intense racing, which was held alongside WTCC series, Team Nova Driver was able to make perfect strategy so that all three drivers could do trouble-free performance in a race which was coloured by multiple crashes.

The race was driven in front of 200000 spectators in a street circuit of Boavista Porto. Temperatures were set to 35 degrees as drivers measured their speed in 4,8 kilometres lap. Campaniço started the event and after 40 minutes delivered the car to Eskelinen, who also increased the leadership for Vieira. Carlos also made a perfect job and brought the car to chequerred flag for over a minute gap. Second car for Team Nova Driver entered the finish line in 4th position.

Reigning Spanish GT-Champion was very pleased for the second victory of current racing season. In three rounds he and Team Nova Driver had collected two victories and one silver position. Its' more than he could ever hope for.

- This was a perfect result for perfect race. Even we lost pole position by 0,024 seconds we managed the situation pretty well in the race. In a two hours of intense racing my several fellow competitors tackled against driving mistakes and crashed out of the race. Also ms. Fortuna was in favor for us as we were able to make a good jump forward in standings. Two victories and one silver position steadly tells how competitive our team is, Eskelinen tells.

- Heavy heat gave lots of challenge for us as sun heated our non-air-condition racing car up to 60 degrees of sauna. However this was a very enjoyable victory and we're very pleased to continue our campaign in August at circuit of Portimao, Algarve, Eskelinen continues.

Gravel Grand Prix calls for a rollercoaster ride

During five racing seasons Eskelinen has celebrated two Finnish Racing Championships and Estonian as well as Spanish GT-Championships. Now he's heading towards his next goal and to keep up his talent, he next competes in Nelivetomies rally which is to be driven inside WRC Finland. In a rally which is to be driven at first weekend of August Eskelinen and his co-driver Arto Kapanen speeds up with his Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution IX FIN-R rally car which is serviced and maintenanced by PrintSport Racing.

Final results European SuperCars Series Boavista Porto 2013, Top-3:
1. Mikko Eskelinen & César Campaniço & Carlos Vieira, Audi R8 LMS Ultra GT3, 1:58.094
2. Pedro Salvador & António Nogueira, Porsche 997, +1:00.005sec
3. José Pedro Fontes & Miguel Barbosa & João Baptista, Mercedes SL8 AMG, +1:18.955sec

3.8.2013 - Mikko Eskelinen flew into silver position in Nelivetomies rally - Techincal difficulties and a puncture reduced the speed and performance

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In first-ever organized Nelivetomies rally, which was driven inside WRC Rally Finland, a flying finn Mikko Eskelinen, age of 41, and his co-driver Arto Kapanen collected second highest trophies. In two intense rally days, nine rollercoaster special stages and 140,38 special stage kilometres Eskelinen tackled for victory against Toyota Corolla WRC driver Seppo Kopra. After suffering technical difficulties, Eskelinen was satisfied for silver medals.

In second stage lack of loose gravel got stuck to the radiator of Eskelinens' Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution rally car and therefore engine temperatures ran up to 105 degrees. To avoid engine failure, ECU of the car ran into a safe mode and reduced power. In fourth stage turbo pipe got loosened and once again all powers were cut short. After opening day season 2008 and 2009 Finnish Racing Champion was in third position, 1 minute and 30 seconds slower than leader Kopra.

After having a short night sleep Eskelinen and Kapanen had an attack for silver position. In first two stages of the second day team was in flames as they managed to catch Tuomas Skantz, who was in silver position at that time. However in penultimate and legendary Ouninpohja stage Eskelinen suffered a puncture and lost two extra minutes. Despite problems season 2010 Suomi Cup champions took silver medals due Skantz technical problem which forced him to retire the event. Eskelinen was thrilled when seeing chequerred flag of the most difficult rally he had ever done.

- Before the rally we knew that its' going to be a battle of survival as the stages had gone in very bad condition due heavy rain. Unfortunately gravel got stuck into our radiator and we drove the stages with safe mode in our ECU. Then in Lankamaa stage turbo pipe got loose and all powers were once again lost. Fortunately PrintSport Racing mechanics were able to fix the problems so that on next day we could match our speed for leader Kopra, Eskelinen tells and conitnues, - However a puncture in Ouninpohja concluded our battle for victory as we drove nearly 17 kilometres with flat tyre. Still after having this much of diffuclties in one rally, I'm very pleased for silver position.

- Kopra took the victory with his more powerful World Rally Car. The stages were in very rough condition and therefore I feel sorry for my and also for my fellow competitor rally cars. I would like to thank my own team, PrintSport Racing team and especially my sponsors and partners for making this podium position come true, Eskelinen shared his feelings.

Next European SuperCars Championship leader returns to tarmac as he in Portugal drives for success in circuit of Portimao, Algarve. Eskelinen, who drives Team Nova Driver Audi R8 LMS Ultra GT3 leads the series after two rounds.

Final results Nelivetomies rally August 2nd-3rd 2013, Jyväskylä, Top-3:
1. Seppo Kopra & Matti-Jussi Partanen, Toyota Corolla WRC, 1:17:13.0
2. Mikko Eskelinen & Arto Kapanen, Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution IX, +3:54.5sec
3. Timo Pitkäniemi & Kirsi Holmberg, Subaru Impreza WRX Sti, +8:53.0sec

1.9.2013 - Mikko Eskelinen and Team Nova Driver crushingly superior in Portugal SuperCars Championship Series - Championship title to Finland

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Flying Finn Mikko Eskelinen, age of 41, drove with Team Nova Driver other drivers superb victory in penultimate round of the Portugalize SuperCar Championship series which was driven in southern Algarve region. Due maximum Championship points, Eskelinen and his team mates César Campaniço and Carlos Vieira secured the title as there are still one race to go. This was fifth title for Eskelinen since the start of his racing career at 2008.

In two hours of race, which was driven in very hot weather at Portimao circuit, Team Nova Drivers measured their speed with Audi R8 LMS Ultra GT3 car. In two hours of intense racing they made a perfect strategy as multi-tilmes portugal Champion César Campaniço rushed from second position to leadership and Eskelinen continued securing that position. Carlos Vieira enjoyed perfect run and after faultless drive and performance, Team Nova Driver celebrated the title to all night long.

- In qualifying we were second and César was able to push to top which position we didn't gave up. Once again we were able to drive a trouble-free event and a result which was according to our plans. This was a race we cannot set better and therefore the victory feels absolutely thrilling, Eskelinen tells.

- During these two seasons as I've been enjoying in Team Nova Driver I've seen how hard team pushes for the success. This secured title is my second in Iberian soil and therefore it feels very special after having Championship titles in Finland, Estonia and Spain. I think now I belong to rare group of drivers who have collected titles from four different countries in just five years, Eskelinen joyes and continues sharing his secret, - Without my long-term sponsors and partners I wouldn't be able to drive in professional teams and due correct choices and perfect performances I have, once again, a joy to thank all my beloved sponsors and partners for these years.

Second car of Team Nova Driver positioned in third place and they have excellent chances to reach silver medals in the series. SuperCars Portugal Series ends in Braga circuit which is to be driven in two weeks. Eskelinen wants to finish the season with another victory.0

- Now that I've set table to another iberian trophy gala it would be perfect to finish the Championship season with another victory. It has been very enjoyable to drive in Team Nova Driver, which in season 2011 believed my skills and now two years later it has been excellent to see how those choises have provided perfect results, Eskelinen concludes.

Portugal SuperCar Series Algarve race results 31.8.2013
1. Mikko Eskelinen & César Campaniço & Carlos Vieira, 2:00:06,379
2. Alvaro Fontes & Miguel Barbosa & José Pedro Fontes, +1 lap
3. João Ramos & João Pedro Figueiredo & Libeido Veiga, + 2 lap

11.10.2013 - Mikko Eskelinen measures skills of Spanish tarmac rally specialists in his first-ever tarmac rally - Two days Rallye de Sierra Morena as a big challenge for the Racing Champion

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Two times Finnish Racing and reigning Spanish GT-Champion, Flying Finn Mikko Eskelinen, age of 41, takes a bold step in his motorsport career and enters his first-ever tarmac rally which is to be driven in Cordoba, South-Spain at third weekend of October.

In current season Eskelinen has driven in portugalise Team Nova Driver at SuperCar Racing series. In Finland he's been rallying on snow and on gravel in Finnish Rally Championship aswell as in WRC Rally Finland. Now he challenges himself by entering smooth and grippy Spanish tarmac in Rallye de Sierra Morena which includes 10 special stages and approximately 202 special stage kilometres. Eskelinen is co-driven by Risto Pietiläinen who is better known as co-driver for Harri Rovanperä in World Rally Championship series.

Finns travel in beautiul Andalucian scenery with Madrid based Guadalix Sierra Racing Subaru Impreza WRX STi rally car, which is tuned according Spanish national rally regulations. In two days of intense tarmac racing they are challenged by Spanish tarmac specialists.

- A year ago this same Spanish Rally team offered me a seat in this same event but due Iber-GT I was forced to make a decision not to enter the event. However now as portugalise SuperCar series has been driven I have no obstacles to enter the event and therefore I accepted the offer I got from Guadalix Sierra Racing and see how I do in my first-ever tarmac rally, Eskelinen tells.

- Even in past six years I've driven many rallyes and racing events in Finland as well as in international arenas, I'm very exited about my forthcoming tarmac debut run. 10 twisty and fast-paced tarmac stages and 202 special stage kilometres offers us a genuine big challenge because in my long motorsport career I've driven only one tarmac rally sprint in Finland. Hopefully my experience from racing circuits comes in handy, Eskelinen hopes and continues, - My co-driver Risto Pietiläinen has lots and lots of experiences in rallying on European tarmac stages and I think with his help we're going to have a good learning weekend.

31st Rallye de Sierra Morena is to be driven at October 19th-20th. In Saturday teams tackle on six special stages and 105,84 special stage kilometres. Three of these stages are driven after sunset and after a night pause they continue drivng on four special stages and 96,24 special stage klometres.

20.10.2013 - Mikko Eskelinen crashed out of Rallye Sierra Cordoba 2013 - First-ever tarmac rally for IberGT Champion was ended at penultimate stage in 7th position

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Reigning Spanish GT Champion Mikko Eskelinen, age of 41, and co-driver Risto Pietiläinen measured ther speed in Rallye Sierra Morena which was driven in Cordoba. Eskelinen, who drove his first-ever tarmac rally suffered a dissapointing result as in penultimate stage Finns crashed out of the the rally.

In Cordoban tricky and twisty 10 special stages and approximately 202 special stage kilometres Eskelinen and Pietiläinen rushed with Madrid-based Guadalix Sierra Racing Subaru Impreza WRX STi. Despite low amount of test kilometres Finns were able to rush into a good speed. Even in pre-rally tests they suffered a dissapointing gearbox failure, Eskelinen was having a good performance until midway of 9th stage. After fast-paced section a right-hand corner caught Eskelinen by surprise and Subaru was found in so deep ditch that continue of the rally was impossible.

- During the rally I was having some brake problems which reduced my self-confidence on finding best possible braking points in the stage. Then in penultimate stage one corner caught me by surprise and it was immediately game over, Eskelinen tells and continues, - Mistake was complitely my own.

- Before having a crash I was doing a good performance in my first-ever tarmac rally. Twisty mountain stages were a big challenge and therefore seventh position would have been a very good result for me. Despite a retirement I was able to fullfill one of my goals which was seeing my speed against top spanish tarmac drivers and therefore I can say that this wasn't my last tarmac rally, Eskelinen promises.

Winner of 31st Rallye Sierra Morena was Syrhayen Pernia who was nearly two minutes faster than silver medalist Alberto Meira.

Final results 31. Rallye Sierra Morena 2013: Top-5:
1. Syrhayen Pernia & Juan Luis Garcia, Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution X, 1:56:16.1
2. Alberto Meira & David Vazquez, Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution X, +1:52.7sec
3. Alejandro Pais & Santiago Pais, Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution X, +3:40.4sec
4. Joan Carchat & Alberg Garduno, Renault Megane RS, +3:52.0sec
5. Jose Antonio Suarez & Candido Carrera, Ford Fiesta R2, +6:31.3sec
ret. Mikko Eskelinen & Risto Pietiläinen, Subaru Impreza WRX STi, SS9 offroad
Mikko Eskelisen kotisivut on suunnitellut ja toteuttanut MediaGuru Jack Bacon - Digitaalisen median tuotantostudio - www.mediaguru.fi