Nürburgring Nordschleife - the best Race Track in the world
Nürburgring (or simply the Ring) is no doubt the most famous racing track in existence.
Today the Ring is a mecca for car enthusiasts from all around the world. The venue is a popular weekend destination for Germans, Brits and Dutchmen, as well as for advanced car enthusiasts from more distant countries. Over the recent years Nürburgring has finally become an attraction for drivers from Russia and other CIS countries. We hope that our site will prove a reliable and helpful source with tips and information on both the track and its surroundings with lots of car rentals, tuning companies, repair shops, hotels and restaurants.
PR-departments of auto manufacturers have also gradually got into worshiping the Ring. At first they just proudly reported that their new model had passed a tough test on the Nordschleife. Later on, they started to claim lap times achieved during the tests and even give imposing status to their new cars. Cadillac CTS-V, for instance, held the record as the fastest production sedan on the Ring for over a year until Porsche Panamera Turbo S appeared. One day we will publish a post about the tricks engineers use to help test drivers achieve better lap times. In fact, even the right choice of rubber compound in rather regular-looking tyres may help shave some seconds off lap times. Let alone using some more aggressive brake components and a slight increase of boost pressure...
The German magazine Sport Auto provides fairly objective information on sports cars tested on the Nordschleife. Its editor-in-cheif Horst von Saurma put miles running various cars on the Ring. He uses the venue to test-drive cars, with their original factory settings and parts intact, in similar road conditions. Von Saurma’s lap times loom large when it comes to standard comparisons of sports cars.
Hard to believe, but it only took two years to complete the Nürburgring. The project was approved in April 1925, and on June 19, 1927 the brand new track hosted the first race, young Rudolf Caracciola winning it on his Mercedes. Since then lots of most gifted racers have won world renown through their victories at the Nürburgring. In the 1930s the track became a showcase for German automotive engineering talent and the unlimited capabilities of their auto plants. It was on the Ring that the legendary Silver Arrows were born, when Mercedes Benz serviceman grinded off all the white paint exposing silver aluminum of the bodywork beneath. Those were the days when Silver Arrows, along with Auto Union cars, dominated the tracks. — Auto Union Gmbh contracted Ferdinand Porsche to design the latter... Mercedes-Benz and Auto Union supercharged engines could produce over 500 hp, which allowed to hit over 300 kmh on straights.
The 1950s and 1960s were the high days of the Nürburgring, when it played host to Grand Prix races. The Ring brought glory to Askari, Fangio, Moss, Hill, Surtees, Clark and Ickx, even though their bolides weren’t always the fastest ones. Fangio won the race in 1957 on Maserati 250F and became a legend. After an emergent pit stop he was the third to rejoin the race, falling a whole minute behind two Ferraris. However, he managed to catch up with them and take over in the remaining eight laps. Later on Fangio said he wouldn’t like to ever race like that again.
The 1970s saw the new generation of F1 bolides, which called for completely new safety standards for racing courses. So, in 1970 a whole system of barriers was built all the way around the track. Before that there had been nothing but bushes and trees lining it. However, Niki Lauda's terrifying accident in 1976, in which he suffered horrendous burns, brought about the demise of the Nordschleife as a Formula 1 circuit. In 1984, though, the area nearby was rebuilt to create a new relatively short racing ring GP Strecke, which met the highest safety standards. It is now the venue of the F1 German Grand Prix. It is now the venue of the F1 German Grand Prix.
Today the Nürburgring complex consists of several racing tracks, i.e. the legendary 20.8 km-long Nordschleife and the somewhat boring 5.1 km-long GP Strecke. During extremely popular VLN Endurance Championship marathon races these tracks are combined to form a unique track layout.
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