80 employees at the voestalpine Grand Prix 3 minutes spent reading
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80 employees at the voestalpine Grand Prix

Christopher Eberl
Holds editorial responsibility for career topics and for the apprentice website. His stories offer insights into the world of work at voestalpine.

voestalpine invited employees from all over the world to take part in the voestalpine Grand Prix at the Red Bull Ring in Spielberg. A total of 80 participants from 35 countries competed from May 8-10, 2015.

Good morning! Guten Tag! Buen día! Dobrý den! Goddag! Καλή μέρα! The 80 voestalpine Grand Prix 2015 participants met at the Red Bull Ring for the first time on the afternoon of Friday, May 8, 2015. After the successful voestalpine world ski championships in Schladming in 2013, this employee event in Spielberg was the meeting point for 80 employees from countries including Argentina, Brazil, France, Austria, Italy, Canada, Columbia, Norway, Russia and the USA.

"It's the people who make a difference at voestalpine because in the end it's their day-to-day commitment which plays a key contribution to the company's success. The voestalpine Grand Prix 2015 is designed to give employees from all over the world the chance to be part of the activities at Spielberg, whilst simultaneously expressing how much we value their input."
ZitatWolfgang Eder, Chairman of the Management Board and CEO of voestalpine AG


Day 1: On the trail of Formula 1

After the official greeting, with a view of the voestalpine wing, the participants made their way to the race track. Just one month before Formula 1 returns to the Red Bull Ring, the participants familiarized themselves with the race course by cycling around the track. After completing the 4.3 kilometers, including some physically challenging sections, the participants set off for an evening to enjoy traditional Austrian hospitality. A rather unusual shuttle service in the form of tractors brought the participants to a rustic alpine hut out in the Styrian countryside. As well as Austrian culinary highlights, the evening also brought the first dose of suspense: the 20 four-person teams were announced during the event. Thus the voestalpine Grand Prix began, and the new teams grouped up to discuss race tactics.


[Video] Highlights of Day 1



Day 2: Go-kart challenge & exclusive program of events

After the joint breakfast at the Red Bull Ring, the last participants slipped into their voestalpine racing suits. The morning program offered employees an exclusive range of events including driving:

  • First open air go-kart training
  • Exciting ‘taxi ride’ with Patrick Friesacher, former F1 driver, in a KTM X-Bow
  • Timed pit stop challenge
  • Tour of the Red Bull Ring with visit to the medical center, time control, winners podium, etc.

After the first training rounds and a joint lunch things started to get truly exciting. The drivers from the 20 teams stepped up to the go-karts and drove in the qualifying round to secure the coveted places in the final. The 5 best teams in each of the two groups of 10 teams qualified for the final of the voestalpine Grand Prix 2015.


Exciting & fair final

Race suit & helmet were checked and adjusted a last time. The anticipation and tension prior to the final was palpable, but the atmosphere amongst all the teams was excellent. The green light and thunderous applause marked the start of the final of the voestalpine Grand Prix 2015. Now it was up to the four drivers on each of the teams to take turns in racing through the curves as fast as possible (See the video of the race of the voestalpine Grand Prix).

The final was a fair but exciting neck-and-neck race, rich in overtaking manoeuvres. But at the end it was Team 7 who took the lead: they were Bettina Pöll from Austria (voestalpine VAE), Adnan Dado Kaukovic from Bosnia (voestalpine Stahl), Mariusz Debczynski from Poland (voestalpine SSC) and Lona Leandro from Brazil (Villares Metals). And the end was of course marked with the obligatory champagne shower for the winners!

The final celebrations and champions dinner with official awards ceremony were held in the evening, hosted in the voestalpine wing lounge. Although, as in every real race, only one team gets to climb to the top of the podium and claim the prize, on this day the true winners were all the participants and voestalpine employees.


[Video] Highlights of Day 2


The international character of the Group

The aim of this event was to give the employees the chance to experience at first hand the international nature of the Group, and outside the office. The voestalpine Group’s continued internationalization is not only reflected in its sites, but above all in the diversity of its employees. The weekend at the Red Bull Ring clearly demonstrated this diversity, as well as the high level of employee commitment.



Christopher Eberl

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