Today was the first day of the 2015 season at the Nürburgring. We’re looking forward to our upcoming trip to the 24 hour race in May and now that the official calendar for the remainder of the year is available, we’ll be setting dates for our fall tour very soon. So with everything getting under way for this year, I thought I’d address an important topic- preparing for your first lap of The Nordschleife.
Here’s some free Nürburgring first time advice- don’t just show up to drive it without any preparation. We’re talking about the most challenging racetrack in the world here and in this day of countless YouTube videos, racing simulations and Nürburgring websites there’s just no excuse for it! What follows is a list of 5 of my favorite resources for preparing for your first lap of The Nordschleife.
- Nürburgring for Dummies I’m a big fan of Chris’ site. Read the whole thing. You will thank me. If you don’t, at least read the disclaimer and the section titled “In case you’re too lazy to actually read this guide.” The site hasn’t had any major updates in a few years, but everything there is still good information and it’s a great starting point for the Nürburgring first timer.
- Nurburgring.org.uk Ben’s site is targeted at those from the UK, but it’s always up to date and has lots of good information for any visitor. Again, please read his safety warning and the beginners section.
- Nürburgring Explorer This is an absolutely fantastic resource! Why search all over YouTube when Adam has professional videos of every corner from the driver perspective and from spectator points too? You should absolutely use this site to get a sense for the layout of the track and to understand what to expect in your first laps of the Nürburgring.
- Your Racing Sim of Choice Console or PC, there are so many decent digital models of The Nordschleife out there, it would be crazy not to use them to help train for your first laps. On the console side, both Gran Turismo and Forza Motorsport have good models. Project CARS will launch soon on both console and PC with what should be a good model. Assetto Corsa on the PC side is said to have one of the most accurate models and worked with RSR Nürburg in brining The Ring to life.
- Circuit Guides Their spiral bound Nurburgring guide is a great read on the flight to Germany! I keep a copy in my helmet bag and study it when I have spare time. It has advice on the racing line for every corner and section of the track. It’s aimed at professional and amateur racers, but can be a valuable resource for helping you learn what the next corner has in store.
Those 5 resources should help you prepare for your first, and all your subsequent, laps of The Nürburgring Nordschleife. It’s not for the faint of heart. You need to spend time preparing to ensure a safe and enjoyable set of laps. That said, if you take the advice and guidance here seriously, know your limits and set out in the right frame of mind, you will have an absolute blast. There is no better road or track in the world for the true driving enthusiast! It is simply must-drive for probably anybody reading this.
Have questions or suggestions for preparing? Put ’em in the comments below!