Are Cars Becoming Too Fast For The Nurburgring?
Porsche’s legendary test driver seems to think soby Kirby, on
Two-time World Rally Champion and Porsche development driver Walter Rohrl has seen it all. The 70-year old has had a sparkling racing career that stretches all the way back to 1973. If there’s a point of authority on matters involving speed and racing, it’s him. So it is a bit surprising that Rohrl actually admitted that today’s performance cars are getting too fast for the Nurburgring.
Speaking with Drive Australia, Rohrl opened up about the growing risks that drivers face when they drive a performance car at the Nurburgring. “You have no room for mistakes, that’s the bad thing,” he said. “On the speeds like in this car (Porsche 911 GT2 RS), you go Schwedenkreuz at 295km/h (183 mph) and Fuchsrohre at 270km/h (168 mph), and I know all the accidents which have been on these places in the last 20 years. If you come to Fuchsrohre at 270, I always think one of the test drivers from Bridgestone; he broke the wheel rim.” Rohrl added that the lack of downforce on a production car compared to a race car makes high-speed attacks more difficult and, for that matter, dangerous. His concerns aren’t unfounded as a number of crashes have taken place in the two specific sections of the track he alluded. One of the more prominent crashes occurred as recently as last year when a Koenigsegg One:1 crashed at the Fuchsrohre section of the track when one of its ABS sensors failed. Rohrl’s hesitancy to drive the 911 GT2 RS around the track came to a head when he declined the offer to set the sports car’s fast lap around the track. Instead, fellow development driver Lars Kern got behind the wheel of the 911 GT2 RS and set the lap record for a production car with a lap time of 6:47.23. It’s unclear if Rohrl could’ve posted a quicker lap than Kern with the newest 911, but with more and more cars breaking the seven-minute lap time barrier, the concerns raised by the two-time World Rally champion may have some merit to them.
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Source: Drive Australia