Wednesday
Apr152009

A Lap Of The Ring

In the past few years the measuring stick for how big and bad assed a manufactures car is has become a lap time on the Nordschleife circuit of the Nurburgring.  This is the legendary 28.265Km/17.5 mile track in Germany that for many years was the home of the German F1 race.  This is the track that Niki Lauda had his famous crash in 1976 and was almost burned to death.

 It's said Nissan's goal with the GTR was to go quicker than a Porsche 911 around this track.  Porsche has in the past shown in it's TV ads engineers doing laps at the track testing the 911.

One of the great things about the track is that it's open to the public and for a fee you can take your car or motorcycle and do a lap.  This is the reference at the end of the Porsche ad when they go to the ATM machine for more cash so they can do more laps.

The cost for driving a single lap of the Nordschleife is €23 for each car or motorcycle. Multi-lap tickets can be purchased for a lower per-lap price, such as 4 laps at a cost of €76 (€19 per lap). Additional multi-lap prices are 8 laps for €146, 15 laps for €251, or 25 laps for €391. An annual ticket with unlimited laps, valid from January to December, can be purchased for €995.

Since the closest most people might ever get to this track is their XBox or PS2/3 I thought we should take a lap around the track with the legendary Hans Stuck.  Stuck is an ex F1 driver and winner of the 24 Hours of LeMans twice.

Stuck takes us for a lap in the BMW M3 GTR.  If you are a sports car nut and the audio of this clip isn't enough for you to get your rocks off then you should just quit now.  The motor on the over run and on the down changes of the gears is just wonderful.  Add in just how fast he's going, flat out in 6th gear on multiple occasions and it has you reaching for your passport and your cell phone to book the next flight there.

Tuesday
Apr142009

Two Wheel Tuesday Dave Despain On Mat Mladin

Having covered Mat Mladin for over 10 years now I have always been impressed with him, as a man, and as a racer.  I have always found Mat to be very fair.  Back in 2001 at a January test at Laguna Seca I interviewed Mat for the old version of Rumblestrip.net and in transcribing the interview misquoted him.  It was interesting to actually get a call from Mat himself to ask if that is what he had said.  It turned out that he was correct and I was not.  I posed a correction to the interview and an apology for misquoting him and we were good.  In fact as long as Mat wasn't "working" he was always available for a chat, an interview or just to say hi.  It was also then that I found Mat to have a very good sense of humor.

Dave Despain who I'm going to guess hasn't always been a fan of Mat given their dust ups in the past still has great respect for the guy and says so here on a recent episode of WindTunnel.

Thursday
Apr092009

LiveFastRacing #24 Return Of The Monkeys

John Hall from LiveFastRacing and I got together to to another show after having the show be down for a while.

We go after the usual suspects, NASCAR, the DMG, Max & Bernie, Barber Motorsports Park, etc..

Kick back and relax, this ones a bit of a marathon.

http://media.libsyn.com/media/rumblestrip/LFR24.mp3

Tuesday
Apr072009

Two Wheel Tuesday The Aprilia RSV4 Factory

A video review from the launch of the RSV4 by the MCN boys.  There is also a 10 minute HD video from Tor of Raptors and Rockets of this, but it's more music video than review.

The RSV4 has been eagerly anticipated by by Aprilia fans like myself, as the Mille has now been around for a decade.  This bike is more MotoGP rep than WSBK machine when you break down what it's all about, it will be interesting to see if anyone does a comparo between this and the vaunted Ducati Desmocidici.

For now have a look, it will be in the states in July according to the boys at AF1 Aprilia.

Monday
Apr062009

Fifth Gear's Jason Plato Massive Save

Most people in North America have no idea who Jason Plato is.  He is a long time BTCC competitor and it's 2001 champion, and one of the hosts of Five TV's Fifth Gear show.  Not only is Jason a skilled driver, but his personality is ready made for TV as you can see in the post race interview.

Jason gets booted from behind and makes an incredible save during this BTCC race.