Marcus Gronholm is a Swedish-speaking Finnish rally driver, who after a long career and after two world championships decided to end his career last autumn. He has designed this year's 'My Aland' stamp for the Aland Post.
Marcus has visited Aland on a number of occasions, mostly with his family during the summer time. He has many fond memories of Aland but, as a rally driver, he likes to focus on the red asphalt and the red gravel roads.
A clear connection to Aland is also Marcus' mental and physical trainer Christoph Treier, originally from Switzerland. He used to live in Aland and Marcus liked to pay him a visit.
The stamp illustrates a sinuous red gravel road, a common sight for those who drive along the bypaths in Aland. In the right margin, we see the contour of Marcus Gronholm's and Christoph Treier's profiles in green and light blue. With this stamp, the Post launches a big piece of news: Aland red granite has been burnt right onto the stamp! The gravel surfacing of the stamp is tangible, a unique feature of a stamp issue. The Austrian printing house Osterreichische Staatsdruckerei made the use of red granite possible; however, the granite was sent to Austria from Aland to guarantee its authenticity!
Date of issue: 26 July 2008