2017 Track Day Nurburgring Nordschleife

Coaching my cousins in their Porsche 911 GT3

What a lovely car! Gifted to famous racing driver Franz Konrad (founder of Konrad Motorsport and winner of 24H Nurburgring 1993) by Porsche after his victory in 1998 Daytona 24H, and having spent most of its life in the US not being driven much, it now belongs to Tom and Jan Terje Ludvigsen. The previous owners have upgraded the car with both more power and bigger brakes, a half-cage, as well as a modified diff that makes the car just lovely to drive.

Tom and Jan Terje have driven the car at various track days back in Norway, but this was their first outing at the Nordschleife, joining Circuit Days and having me as their personal coach. It was not their first time at the Nordschleife, but the previous encounter with the most difficult track in the world was so long ago that we had to start slowly with getting their track knowledge up to speed. Studying videos is one thing, being a passenger with somebody driving and explaining the line is much better, but driving yourself is of course the ultimate way. But it is not easy! It’s actually very difficult, as Tom expressed it, and as Jan Terje experienced it having spun at Hocheichen – luckily without hitting anything.

Fortunately, the weather was perfect, dry and not too hot, and the traffic moderate and I must say very well behaved. Overtaking on invitation-only sounds a bit over-cautious, but it actually worked out very well, with most cars blinking early and staying right to let us pass, or being patient enough to let us finish a turn before we would blink and stay right to let them pass.

The day was only interrupted by two red flag pauses, so we got plenty of laps and it was obvious that both Tom and Jan Terje improved a lot during the day, and had fun doing so. I really hope to see both of them, and their lovely car, back at the ‘ring again very soon!