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      06-19-2015, 07:30 AM   #1
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The end of an era? Nurburgring bans timed lap records

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Saw this on the wires today.

If it is really true, this should strike a deep chord in all our souls as we have to come rely and worship times set by people, companies, and legends around the famous and infamous Green Hell. Although some have decried "shenanigans" for many years on how futile a Ring time actually is and that it actually in real life means nothing, it is generally accepted that knowing a car's Ring time is a good performance measure, if nothing but for bragging rights and heated debates and discussions. It is understandable why the management would want to do this after that spectator was killed, but could this be the end of an era?

More to follow.

http://thesupercarkids.com/the-nurbu...d-lap-records/

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Bizarre news from the Nurburgring in the form of a ban on attempting to set lap records around the famous track renowned for its 13 miles of hell.

This decision came after the fatal accident that happened during the VLN race earlier this year in which a GT-R came off the track, over the barriers and killed a spectator. Shortly after the incident a speed limit was introduced on that short stretch of track on the Flugplatz section, but now more and more speed restrictions are appearing for health and safety reasons. According to Nurburgring management, they will review this decision at a later date, but for now it will be in place.

Koenigsegg were about the try for the production car lap record with the One:1, but are now on hold.

http://www.apex-the-movie.com/blog/2...ed-lap-records

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This week, the management group overseeing Germany’s Nürburgring Nordschleife moved to ban manufacturers from attempting and publishing timed laps on the famed, 13-mile course. For car enthusiasts who judge modern sports cars by how quickly they can round the circuit, it’s an unthinkable, if not wholly unexpected, turn of events.

For Christian Von Koenigsegg, it’s even more disappointing; the news comes just days before he was to spend a week at the circuit with the new Koenigsegg One:1 hypercar in hopes of setting a lap record. It’s part of Koenigsegg’s three-year plan to establish the One:1 as the fastest production car in the world.

It was early Tuesday morning when I received an urgent phone call from Christian. In two days, I was to jump on a plane with my team to capture the Koenigsegg lap-time effort for our upcoming 4K documentary, APEX, which we’re producing in conjunction with Sony. This is the final chapter in a storyline that follows the past three years of auto manufacturers battling it out for technological dominance in producing halo cars for the next decade, cars including the Porsche 918, McLaren P1, and Ferrari LaFerrari. All have shown what they’re worth on the track, but the Koenigsegg One:1 has yet to do so.

Now we have a new story to tell: The Nürburgring benchmark of sports-car superiority has come to a screeching halt, and the Koenigsegg One:1’s place on the leaderboard is in jeopardy. We’d been on stand-by to fly across the Atlantic (on moments’ notice) to capture Koenigsegg’s attempt. This time, helicopter crews were ready to go, logistics were sorted, and travel was booked. The sudden notification from Nürburgring management couldn’t have come at a more inopportune moment for everyone.

The decision to ban timed laps stems from an accident earlier this year at a VLN race, involving driver Jann Mardenborough, in which a spectator was killed. Track management reacted by imposing a speed limit at Flugplatz, where the crash occurred. Since then, management has imposed further restrictions in other high-speed sectors. This is a particularly disappointing development for Koenigsegg, since the One:1’s flat-out speed in those sectors would likely have given it a lap-time advantage. In Tiergarten, for instance, a long, fast section where Christian estimates the One:1 could easily hit 300 kph, speed is now restricted to just 200 kph.

Official word from Nurburgring management is that these restrictions will be reviewed at the end of the year, but for the time being, manufacturers like Koenigsegg are banned from attempting lap-time runs — even if they’ve rented out the entire track for themselves. The Koenigsegg team and the One:1 are now stuck in a holding pattern. They have a car that’s ready to attack the northern loop. Their simulations and data suggest they’ve got a good chance to best their competitors. Even Koenigsegg’s past track data suggests their best segment times, when stitched together, would undercut the Porsche 918’s official 6:57 time by double-digit seconds.

But there’s a twist to the story. After the initial restrictions were in place, Lamborghini ran its new Aventador SV and published a sub-seven-minute lap time. Nürburgring management claims Lamborghini’s attempt happened one day before they issued the latest round of restrictions. Yet at the same time, WTCC laps have been allowed to ignore all speed limits all together? What’s the deal? We’re investigating.

So what’s next for Koenigsegg and our film, APEX? The helicopter crews are ready, the One:1 is ready, but we don’t have anywhere to run the car.

Is there a new benchmark to be set? Should nearby Spa Francorchamps, another long, high-speed track with motorsports provenance, become the new venue for lap time tests? Maybe a stateside circuit like the four-mile West Grand course at VIR would fit the bill? What about setting an endurance record? Let the Reddit car forums march with their keyboards and pitchforks.
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      06-19-2015, 11:07 AM   #2
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I don't think it's a wise move on behalf of the Nurburgring's management team to ban us from setting lap times. Many people have died on the 'ring and I think it's pretty stupid to set a speed limit on a racetrack. I think we can all agree that when we go to a racetrack we understand the danger and consequences of our actions and it would've been better to have stopped spectators from standing in "high risk" area's.

Anyway I think we can get a good idea of performance from the 0-62 times and top speed figures that manufactures provide us with but we all know these aren't always accurate. All these numbers really do is supply us with bragging rights. If the Nurburgring doesn't let us have comparable lap times, then as petrol heads we'll move on (To another track). I can say though that it was always fun finding out about manufactures such as McLaren, Porsche, Ferrari etc spending millions in the quest to shave off milliseconds just to out do each-other.

Last edited by TazOjla; 06-19-2015 at 11:14 AM..
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      06-19-2015, 12:21 PM   #3
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According to a detailed explanation in Sport Auto (home of the famous Supertest ring lap times) this is the current situation:

The speed limits came after the fatal accident during the first VLN race this season. The national German motorsport body introduced the speed limits for race sessions at the ring. The owners of Nurburgring has also introduced the same speed limits during other sessions at the track. This was due to legal advice should there be accidents in the speed limited zones during other sessions if the speed limits only was mandatory for race sessions.

The speed limits from the German Motorsport body is temporary pending the outcome of the investigation of the fatal accident.


There isn't a specific ban on setting a lap time or a lap record. However the speed limits that is now enforced during race sessions has also been made mandatory for tourist rides and commercial use of the ring. The industry pool sessions aren't restricted however. That is due to insurance conditions and legal reasons that the industry pool sessions are running under.

There are currently 3 enforced speed limits on the track:

Hocheichen to Flugplatz - 797m - 200km/h
To Schwedenkreuz - 1120m - 250km/h
Döttinger Höhe - 2190m - 250km/h

In total 4107m of the track has a speed limit.

During the 24h race at Nurburgring the speed limits had a 6s impact on GT3 lap times, so not really dramatic. On a 500s lap the impact is 1,2%

Sport Auto will do a comparison lap with a previously tested car with over 500hp to verify the effect the speed limits has on the Supertest lap times.

So, while it of course is bad news for Koenigsegg and others trying to set the lap record, it won't affect most lap times for normal people. And Sport Auto says that it most likely will only affect cars with over 500hp (as a rough guideline). So most cars will still be able to set "lap records" and cars like the new M3/M4 etc will most likely not be affected at all by the speed limits.
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      06-19-2015, 12:32 PM   #4
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If every time someone died we banned the activity, we wouldn't be able to much at all.
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      06-19-2015, 01:55 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Wills2 View Post
If every time someone died we banned the activity, we wouldn't be able to much at all.
No kidding. Well at least nobody has died posting to M5Pos ... ugh ... ooooh ....

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      06-19-2015, 05:00 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Wills2
If every time someone died we banned the activity, we wouldn't be able to much at all.
And if we didn't take measures we still would be driving without seatbelts and with a higher alcohol limit for instance... Not all progress is good, but some is

On the subject of measures after accidents on a race track. The most common measure is to reduce speed via chicanes or a different track layout. Lots of race tracks have changed layouten over the years after incidents or other safety causes. One of the longest and fastest straights on a race track, the Mulsanne straight at Le Mans, got a chicane many years ago in order to reduce speed.

And let's not forget that some major accidents in F1 at the ring stopped F1 racing there. Niki Lauda's accident for instance. So this isn't exactly a new situation for the Nordschleife...

As a short term immediate measure Nurburgring has implemented speed limits. The long term solution might be changing the track layout since speeds now are so much higher than what the track was designed for. So do we want a new track layout at these places or a speed limit? Most likely neither... But we might end up with one or the other...

I'm just glad they haven't made a rushed decision to change the track layout before the accident has been thouroghly investigated. Much better a temporary speed limit!
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      06-19-2015, 06:19 PM   #7
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The US answer is better barriers between the track and fans. That's never a guarantee against injury but helps. I'll let you know in August if new barriers at VIR impede viewing or photography.
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      06-20-2015, 05:19 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by richard in NC View Post
The US answer is better barriers between the track and fans. That's never a guarantee against injury but helps. I'll let you know in August if new barriers at VIR impede viewing or photography.
Better barriers is a good thing, but respectfully disagree that the "US answer" is limited to that...

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sebrin...tional_Raceway

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mazda_Raceway_Laguna_Seca

https://en.wikipedia.org/?title=Watk..._International

Changing track layout is also part of the "US answer", just as it is in the rest of the world...
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      06-20-2015, 06:13 AM   #9
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This is funny so Germany wants to "speed limit the track" but the autobahn has no speed limit.....shit makes perfect sense guys , well done !
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      06-20-2015, 08:32 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Boostedm514
This is funny so Germany wants to "speed limit the track" but the autobahn has no speed limit.....shit makes perfect sense guys , well done !
Lots of speed limits on the Autobahn... For instance where road conditions aren't safe enough And remember that during tourist sessions the Nordschleife is considered a public road where public road legislation applies. This is why it's illegal to overtake on the right side for instance. And there has been a speed limit for years at the part of the track where you have the second entrance during tourist sessions.

But of course a race track with speed limits kind of takes the point out of racing...
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      06-20-2015, 01:57 PM   #11
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Good thing I got my attempt(s) out of the way before the ban .
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      06-20-2015, 02:30 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Boss330 View Post
Lots of speed limits on the Autobahn... For instance where road conditions aren't safe enough And remember that during tourist sessions the Nordschleife is considered a public road where public road legislation applies. This is why it's illegal to overtake on the right side for instance. And there has been a speed limit for years at the part of the track where you have the second entrance during tourist sessions.

But of course a race track with speed limits kind of takes the point out of racing...
I can't even begin to wrap my brain around this.
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      06-21-2015, 06:21 AM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Boss330 View Post
One of the longest and fastest straights on a race track, the Mulsanne straight at Le Mans, got a chicane many years ago in order to reduce speed.
2 chicane's actually.

Boss is correct, there is a long history of modifying track layout to improve safety. A speed limit on the other hand is so ridiculous I would almost guarantee it's a temporary measure.
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      06-21-2015, 06:23 AM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gblansten View Post
I can't even begin to wrap my brain around this.
I'll drive the "cop" car.
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      06-21-2015, 08:43 AM   #15
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      06-22-2015, 11:20 AM   #16
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Oh the irony. No speed limit on much of the Interstates where everybody with every trashy car on mostly-tires can go, and a speed limit on the race track.
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      06-25-2015, 11:04 AM   #17
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Why did this make the front page? Kind of ridiculous, really.
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      06-25-2015, 11:05 AM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Boostedm514
This is funny so Germany wants to "speed limit the track" but the autobahn has no speed limit.....shit makes perfect sense guys , well done !
There is more autobahn with speed limits than without.
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      06-25-2015, 11:16 AM   #19
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WTF, we wish we had something so cool and beautiful here in the states.

Spectators and fans get out of the fucking way, very simple fix.

I feel the Ring is the benchmark, and testing needs to be done their to push us and future transportation technologies.
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      06-25-2015, 11:32 AM   #20
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I stole this one from a Facebook comment. LOL!
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      06-25-2015, 11:35 AM   #21
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Oh well. There's still Laguna Seca.
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      06-25-2015, 11:35 AM   #22
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Block spectators from the areas that can't be protected - reinforce barriers in trouble areas and educate spectators of the risk that are taking then open it up to lap times. Hate to see this get nannyfied.
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