Sevenman's TVR (was SAAB) Blog

September 20, 2003

Nurburgring Trip

Filed under: Saab — Administrator @ 7:59 am

I have been to Germany for a week for a top-quality Nurburgring trip, hosted by Eric and Anne and organised through Saabscene.

pre-trip thread
post-trip thread

Took the tunnel over which was very easy, then since we weren’t meeting up until the afternoon, I had a very steady drive to the Ring using the instructions on Nurburgring.org. So steady that the Saab averaged about 40 mpg from Calais.

Arriving there late afternoon before the track opened there were already a few of the Saab guys there messing about with cars and getting ready to go out.

Saabs in car park

I went out for 2 laps with Mark and Eric as co-pilots. Track was quiet, and it was good fun. On the second lap, not helped by a boot full of luggage, suffered some brake fade on the descent to Breidscheid, but it was ok after that.

At start
leaving start

Also went out in Eric’s wife’s Twingo since his Saab was in the garage. This is a great car, and we managed to harass some much faster machines, while 4-up, due to Eric’s familiarity with the track and driving skills.

Ring Twingo

When the track closed we drove back to Eric’s, and from there we spent a couple of days sightseeing, having fun, and BBQing food.

Eric and his Saab
Eric and Saab

Saabs outside Eric’s house
Saabs outside Eric's

As part of the travelling about we got to have a good Autobahn blast in derestricted sections. The Saab will go off the Speedo, and I thnk it made the 150mph max speed. This still put me in last place in the convoy of very rapidly moving cars…

Also head a 5th gear drag race against Kevin’s slightly older 9000 Aero. From 50 to 130 mph it was side by side with cars taking turns to lead, and seemed to be carrying on that way until traffic appeared in the distance and we backed off.

Kevin and his 9000 Aero
Kevin

Nice to be able to open the car up on quiet roads without worrying about breakign the speed limit.

Also found that due to the repeated vigorous driving, the car started to adapt and boost higher. Suffered by first overboost spike when after driving at full throttle in 3rd and changing to 4th and flooring it the car “jerked” very suddenly as it hit overboost and cut fuel. Picked up ok after that and was fine for the rest of the trip. According to the guys following, a good cloud of red stuff came out of the exhust, so I guess it disturbed some rust…

We returned at the weekend for a full day of track time, and got there early.

It was a fast convoy cruise with stretches at 120 mph or so where permissible.

Filling up
Filling up

I got a lap done first thing with a friend of Eric’s as co-driver. All was going well until we started the uphill and I noticed a really big loss of power. Car was driving fine, but no boost. Very slow indeed.

On making it back to the car park we all had a look, checking dump valve, which seemed to be fine, although the hose to it broke since it had started to perish. We managed to fix that, but silicone hoses are now on the to-do list.

Injectie (pic below) took me to Ring Racing who were open early.
Injectie

Injectie is a Saab mechanic and speaks good German. he guessed that a clip had come off the wastegate actuator, so that all exhaust gasses were diverted from the turbo. This was indeed the case, and it is a bit awkward to get to even wth the car on a lift. But Ring Racing persevered, got the car fixed, and charged me only 10 Euros for a fair bit of effort. Very happy :)

On returning, the track had really filled up, so we went to Brunchen to spectate, and watch some of the other Saabs going round.

When it quietened down in the late afternoon we went back for more laps, and to see cars in the car park.

F40
Sierra
busy
Breidscheid

Had a passenger ride with a friend of Eric’s in his Ring-ready Porsch. It was very quick, and the braking and cornerign were most impressive, passing lots of bikes and with nothing catching up.

Eric had another blast in the Ring Twingo despite his Saab being there. This time setting off just before Phillips much faster tuned 9-3. The Twingo prevailed, hasslign a 911 on the downhill sections and dropping Phillip early on. He didn’t catch up, even considering the Twingo’s lack of speed on the uphill sections.

Ring Twingo
Ring Twingo

Had some laps in Mark’s tuned 9000 which were good.
Mark and me

Alo went out in Eric’s car which was quick.
Eric

Then had another lap at the end of the day with Mark co-driving. This was my best lap and things were starting to come together, enough to keep up with a (probably slowly driven) 911 for some of the latter part of the lap.

My passenger should probably have a helmet too…
Finishing

Having completed my Ring driving, my car was worthy of a sticker. They didn’t have any black stickers, so it had to be blue.

Ring sticker

It was a great experience, and it was very kind of Eric and Anne to put us up for so many nights.

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