The 24 Hours of Nürburgring is nowadays the most famous race that recalls the original route of Nordschleife, nicknamed “The Green Hell” by the Formula 1 champion Jacky Stewart, who won in that circuit three times. In 1976 Nordschleife would say goodbye to F1 forever with the victory of James Hunt
The circuit is located in the dense forests of the town of Eifel (Germany), the longest one in the world with 20,832 meters after its remodeling in 2002 (without including variants adapted to other great prizes such as Formula 1).
The 24 hours of Nürburgring is an endurance race which has been organized by the ADAC (General German Automobile Club) since 1970 for touring and GT cars. It usually takes place during the months of May and June, when fans can enjoy and even compete in its complicated design (for the reasonable price of about 8,000 euros). The route is full of unrepeatable curves (more than 170) and, far from being level, it has got 300 metres of elevation change. These features give it a unique character and it is easy to make mistakes and end up against its safety guardrails.
More than 200 cars and 800 drivers participate every year. The vehicles are divided into three categories to avoid accidents at the start of the race, and they are restricted to driving a maximum of two hours and a half. German car brands like BMW, Porsche and Audi are the historical leaders of the competition. The drivers Timo Bernhard, Pedro Lamy and Marcel Tiemann share the record of five victories.
The current record of lapping the ring was broken in 2015 by the Audi R8 with 156 laps, and the first victory of a turbo car was conquered in 1987 by the Ford Sierra RS Cosworth.
Luckily for the circuit lovers, it is open all over the year to be enjoyed without any speed limit just by paying the one-way toll: about 30 euros per lap, as long as your car is approved.
Translated by Jose Vicente Duran