As a rule the Nürburgring grand prix track is often criticised for lacking the soul and charms of its longer Nordschleife sibling. Indeed, when asked about the GP circuit Sabine Schmitz told us, “I hate it!”
We understand a modern grand prix circuit can never hope to match challenges posed by the 20.8km Green Hell. Yet, to us, it has always looked like a fun place to race. The climb up the hill from Turn 7 to Turns 13 and 14 (Dunlop curve to NGK chicane), especially.
So it was a wry smile we enjoyed the answers given by Mark Webber (Red Bull) and Lewis Hamilton (Mercedes AMG) when they were asked for their thoughts on the GP track after qualifying for tonight’s 2013 German Grand Prix.
Mark Webber, who won his first grand prix at the Nürburgring in 2009, said, “It’s a beautiful little circuit for us to still drive on so I think all the guys enjoy driving here.”
While Lewis Hamilton, winner here in 2008 and 2011, added, “It’s a fantastic circuit, one of the classics and it hasn’t lost that feel of an old classic circuit.”
You can read their full comments after the break.
[Pics: Red Bull/Getty Images & Mercedes AMG]
Mark Webber on the Nürburgring Grand Prix track
I think it is a classic circuit, still a bit of an old school track, particularly the middle sector. Even things like the kerbs, they’re quite nice, they’re the old-style kerbs.
I said to Charlie [Whiting] that we should put some of these kerbs actually in some new circuits because it’s self-policing on the exit. We don’t have this astro-turf rubbish, we have…
It’s a beautiful little circuit for us to still drive on so I think all the guys enjoy driving here. Also the undulations are quite nice: climbing in a Formula One car and having the different speed range but the entries are the most important. You have to be very accurate on the way in to these corners, so I think that’s important.
The first sector is quite wide, the second sector is quite narrow, so accuracy and line is probably a little bit more… a sniff more important than maybe some other tracks where we have a bit more scope for line.
Lewis Hamilton on the Nürburgring Grand Prix track
It’s a fantastic circuit, one of the classics and it hasn’t lost that feel of an old classic circuit.
There’s not one particular part of the track that’s harder than the other. It’s a very fast, flowing circuit. As you can see, the Red Bulls seem to be quite quick from the middle… in the last sector. I was able to be a little bit quicker in the first sector.
It’s really being quite accurate with the lines that you choose and trying to keep up. You need the downforce to keep up the minimum speed through the corners.
I don’t think there’s one particular place that’s harder than any others.
[Circuit map: Formula1.com]