The only word is speechless... Technically, I have driven the Nürburgring's 22km Nordschleif hundreds of times over the last few years. However, despite the great graphics, Playstation has failed to grasp the smell of the engine, the fog rolling through the German countryside and the true emotion, which is a mixture of pure adrenaline and fear.
The Nürburgring has been a drivers dream since it was created in 1927 and the ability to drive on the same track as many Grand Prix legends, such as Michael Schumacher, becomes a surreal experience when you arrive at the track. The track has also became a trophy, as car companies strive to hold the title of fastest lap time, currently help by Porsche's 918 Spydera at 6 minutes and 57 seconds. As a car enthusiast I have seen many friends and gear heads with that red Nürburgring sticker right next to their licence plate, yet I have never actually spoken with someone who has driven on the track.
Unfortunately... It's not cheap. You need to rent a car from a major city like Cologne (bonus Autobahn!) and car rental at the track is about 100 euro a lap, but remember you will most likely never do it again so If you can go all out. Many people use a rental car on the track as you will only pay around 33 euro a lap. However, once on the track your insurance is void and unless you can afford to pay for a new totally new rental car, pay the extra
and use one at the track.
I used the company Rent Race Car, located right in front of the track entrance and included in the price is gas, insurance and of course a range of cars (http://www.rentracecar.com).
Before planning a trip make sure to check if public lap times are available by using the Nürburgring's website www.nuerburgring.de.
I have heard the phrase "once in a lifetime" before, however this has been the first time I have ever truly felt it, driving the Nürburgring is a must
Adam Splonick is a self-described gear head who is obsessed with Top Gear and lives in Ottawa, Canada. He currently juggles working for the Department of National Defence and diligently attending his classes at Carleton University.