It's about 10pm in Germany right now. As I write this, I'm sitting inside Pistenklause, a legendary restaurant in the quaint-yet-amazing town of Nurburg, Germany. The restaurant itself, and the hotel we're staying at, Hotel Am Tiergarten, sits within the actual Nurburgring Nordschleife course.
The hotel is owned by the Schmitz family of Nurburg – in case you haven't heard, Sabine Schmitz, the daughter of the hotel owners, is pretty well known in these parts – she is an accomplished driver who won the 24 hours of Nuburgring twice. You might have also heard of her famous "Nurburgring taxi rides" that she gives… hmm, I wonder if we can find her and ask her to take us for a taxi ride? We'll see… more on that later.
My original reason for posting this is, I wanted to share a cool story with you all. This is my first trip to Germany, so I'm like a kid in a candy store – with my eyes wide open with amazement wherever we go. So the other day, Rod and I were driving down one of the nice twisty country roads that leads to Nurburgring. On the way there, we randomly saw all sorts of BMWs parked off on the side of the road. I thought maybe it was a mini car meet or something, so we decided to stop off (aka: Rod slammed on the brakes unexpectedly without forewarning) and check it out.
However, when I walked up with my camera in my hand, I realized that the car owners weren't even there! Where the hell was everyone?
Rod started looking around, and found a tiny clearing in the trees. He yelled over to me… "Antonio! Come over here! You need to see this! This is amazing!"
After I crossed the road and hopped over the guardrail with all my camera gear strapped to my neck, I followed Rod into the small clearing, which broke away at the densely forested trees surrounding us. As we walked along the path, we heard some happy and familiar sounds – engines revving flat out and tires squealing!
Holyyyyyy sh… What I saw in front of me was so amazing. It was Nurburgring Nordschleife!!! The legendary German race course, made famous by countless magazines, videos, books, race events, video games, and personal stories. Words just couldn't explain… I was trippin out. I couldn't believe I was looking at the legendary Nordschleife with my own eyes. I mean, I've heard aout it forever, but I was actually here, standing right next to the track, as all sorts of cars, motorcycles, and believe it or not.. even BUSES made quick laps around the track!
Right as I began getting all misty and nostalgic, we started feeling raindrops. A cool summer rain began coming down on us, and even though Rod and everyone else headed for the trees to take cover, I decided to just stand out there, allowing myself and my cameras to get wet. Screw it, I figured… I was in Germany. I should chill out in the rain and enjoy this moment. It was like one of those credit card commercials – priceless!
Right as it began raining (it was getting dark also), many of the cars began slowing down and making their way off the track… so I didn't have too long of an opportunity to take photos. However, here's a few samples of some pics so you can get an idea of what we saw at Nordschleife!
Check out this Mini going full out in the rain. It was cool to see the owner of this Mini wasn't afraid… even if he did have positive camber up front!
Seriously, I can't even count how many BMWs and Porsches I saw at Nordschleife. They're all over the place! Actually… they're all over Germany! They seem to be the coolest, sportiest cars out here!
These were the last few guys out on the track. By this time, I was getting ridiculously soaked, and there were cars spinning out and looking foolish. Look at the graffiti painted all over the track… only at Nordschleife! Stay tuned… there's more to come!