At times it felt like we were famous when we drove down the streets and people stopped on the side of the road to take pictures.
There is no track in the world quite like the Nürburgring in Germany. Not only is it the longest permanent track in existence, it also holds a reputation of prestige, ultimate performance, and of course, being the “Green Hell.” While many of us can only dream of experiencing this famous track, the Baden-Württemberg International Corvette Club based in Germany recently took the trip of a lifetime there, experiencing everything that the track has to offer and then some behind the wheels of their Corvettes. Of course, we wish we could’ve been overseas to experience the Nürburgring Corvette weekend ourselves, but thanks to club member Brian Davis, we came as close as we could without physically being there.
Last month we told you about the fantastic weekend at the Nürburgring the Baden-Württemberg International Corvette Club had planned August 25th and 26th. After the weekend was over, we got in touch with Brian, our go-to guy with the club, to see how the event went.
The turnout at the Nürburgring weekend was fantastic, including 28 Corvettes (about half C5 and half C6, including a ZR1), a CTS-V and a BMW, representing the Czech Republic, Germany, the Netherlands and the United States.
“The best part of the event was simply to see 28 Corvettes overrunning the streets and track,” Davis told us in an email conversation. “It was a huge showing for the American sports car vs. the normal BMWs and Audis. No matter where we went we received thumbs up and waves. At times it felt like we were famous when we drove down the streets and people stopped on the side of the road to take pictures.”
Trackside at the Nürburgring over lunch isn't a bad way to watch a race if you ask us.
Once they had arrived in town, the 15 BWICC members that attended met up at noon for a photo shoot across the street from Ring Boulevard. From there, members went their separate ways, exploring the area, doing some sight seeing and visiting the Ring Werks Museum. The crew also got the opportunity to check out a bit of the VLN Endurance Race from their hotel balconies that overlooked the F1 course and continued watching the competition while eating lunch trackside.
Once everyone was settled in their rooms and had eaten lunch, the group set off for the Nordschleife track. Unfortunately, due to high volumes of traffic with the VNL race, only seven drivers were able to complete a lap or two, Davis being one of them. He told us that although the group was more going for the experience than fast lap times, he was able to improve on his previous lap times and lay down a 10:18 on the Green Hell.
Once the afternoon’s racing was over, everyone met at the Langstreckenbar, an American/German watering hole across from the Ring Werks, for dinner, a few drinks and some socializing. There, five Corvette owners from the Netherlands and 10 local Corvette owners from the Stamimtisch group joined up with the BWICC group ,completing the 30-participant count. At dinner, everyone who attended was awarded a Corvette Milestone certificate signifying their drive (or intended drive) on the Nordschleife in their Corvette.
After dinner, part of the group took part in a nighttime photo opportunity and then reconvened at the Dorint Hotel bar for adult beverages and conversation.
Although heavy traffic and Mother Nature hindered the group's track time a bit, all participants got a chance to experience the Green Hell for themselves (many for the first time).
The next morning the crew headed to the wet track under foggy conditions after eating breakfast in the hotel restaurant. Fortunately, the group caught a break in the weather about 9:30 AM and were able to all complete three to four laps on the famed track before rain soaked the area around noon. While eating lunch, the group watched the start of a motorcycle race, wrapping up their weekend full of fun. By 4 PM on Sunday everyone had headed home, already thinking of the next trip to the Nürburgring for the group.
Davis told us that if done again, planning for track time and parking would be a major consideration. Although the group had a designated parking area, other cars were mingled in not allowing for large Corvette-only gatherings at the facility. And while the group tried to convoy on the track on Saturday, they kept getting split up into pairs and groups of three due to traffic, so the participants convened after each lap to let the brakes cool and swap stories from their experience on the Green Hell rather than driving as a pack. Crashes on the track on Sunday involving other vehicles presented a similar issue.
Although riddled with surprises from Mother Nature and heavy track traffic, the Nürburgring Corvette weekend sounds like it was a blast and the group is hoping to do it again in the future. Maybe by then we’ll be able to attend!