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View Full Version : My Ring Trip 14-18th May



c_w
22-05-2009, 10:08 AM
The forecast leading up to the trip did not fill me with optimism for a good trip. For me the weather can decide how well the trip goes; I much prefer dry weather as the 'Ring is pretty hairy to drive at any kind of pace in the wet or damp. Forecast for all weekend showed rain for both the UK and Germany; it's always good to have nice weather for the drive over too and the drive down to Dover in the UK was, surprisingly, dry though. Exiting the ferry we were greeted to warm sun burning through early morning mist.

I made the mistake of locking the car on the ferry with the fob which meant the alarm was going off for 2 hrs draining the battery. Luckily I was aware the battery was a little weak and took jump leads and was kindly assisted by an E30 325i track car owner who let me jump start off his battery. The car started fine for the rest of the trip until the return ferry trip where I locked the car with the fob again...

The drive from Dunkerque to the hotel was pretty easy, light traffic and sunny weather, arriving in an easy 4.5hrs with a quick fuel stop. The weather was now cloudy but conditions were dry. Quickly check in at the hotel (Blau Ecke), empty the car and straight to the 'Ring for the 5:15pm evening "session". I decided to buy a 4 lap ticket and wait for the track to open - apparently the track was delayed until 6pm due to testing. However, at approximately 5:16pm it started to rain anyway! None of our group decided to venture onto the track on the Thursday evening and hoped Friday would be a dryer day. Friday opening was from 2pm and the weather looked promising; the overnight showers had dried and despite being overcast it was pretty bright and roads were dry. I did a quick dry lap at 2:15pm but towards the end of the lap....rain - again! Back to the car park and the rain came heavier. Still, there was quite a lot going on in the car park and the track remained busy throughout the day. Back to the hotel and change for evening; Dino had arranged dinner for 7:30pm so we pile in to Matt's R32 and head up for a steak on a stone for dinner in Adenau which was tastey!!

http://www.z3mcoupe.com/photopost/data//500/583ring05.jpg

Saturday morning and glourious blue sky! Result. The roads were drying out from the night's rain and was warming up nicely. Heading to the circuit for the 10am opening and it was already queuing to get in the car park. I decided to put my helmet on and go straight through on to the 'Ring. Traffic on the actual Ring was pretty light compared to the crowded car park and I got a few good laps in in the morning. Feeling a little tired and hungry around midday I retired back to the hotel for a few hours. The track was open until 7:30pm which is a pretty long day to be there from the opening. Coming back around 4pm and the track was closed but reopened shortly. After the initial rush to get on the freshly re-opened track the car park began to flow cars on to and off the Ring so parking wasn't too bad.

I'd recently bought a second set of wheels for track use fitted with R888s which I'd tried out for the first time at Cadwell mainly to assess that a. they work and b. what the wear rate was like; they were good on both counts. This was my first trip using R888s so I was keen to see if they made a difference - they primarily seem to give a big confidence boost and the car just feels tighter on the track rather than the more loose feeling you get on road tyres. This meant laps around 8m30 were pretty effortless and I was probably averaging around 8m20 for most laps with traffic.

On the Sunday I gave a few passenger rides and as the afternoon progressed the weather conditions were getting better and better. At the end of the day, with 1 lap left on my ticket, I made a last minute dash for fuel before the track closed and managed to get on just as they were closing the gates. This gave me a pretty clear lap; only towards the end did I start catching some traffic. The lap time was pretty much 8mins dead which I was pretty pleased with! - had it not been for the couple of cars at the end I'm sure this would have been around 7m58 or 59!

http://www.z3mcoupe.com/photopost/data//500/583newring01.jpg
Getting some air on the back wheels!

Back home and the R888s seem to have held up well, previously used on a Cadwell trackday and doing around 24 fast Ring laps plus the 1200 road miles back and forth from home they still seem to have plenty of life left in them.

Youtube Videos

8mins BTG
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gEf1kKSBbUg

Chasing the new R35 GTR "Skyline"
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=b-KvnB8Itj4

mjrc
22-05-2009, 11:38 AM
Awesome car and well done! Always loved the Mcoupe and would rather that than a GTR for a few laps :thumb:

Jhonno
22-05-2009, 12:01 PM
B) B)

I love M Coupes!! Yours is stunning.. Looks like a good trip also

c_w
22-05-2009, 12:17 PM
Thanks! Yep was a great trip overall, particularly as the weather came good for the weekend.

SimonP
22-05-2009, 03:32 PM
Originally posted by c_w@May 22 2009, 10:08 AM
http://www.z3mcoupe.com/photopost/data//500/583ring05.jpg


If jealousy didn't prevent me from doing so, I'd have this as my wallpaper :whistle: . What a stunning looking car :thumb: Great lap with the GTR even if it was slightly frustrating. I thought the guy from Evo had more experience of the Ring than he was showing....or is he not quite comfortable with the car yet?

c_w
22-05-2009, 04:00 PM
Heheh thanks! :D

I think the EVO driver has been there a fair few times but was probably more unfamiliar with the car than anything.

ott
22-05-2009, 07:28 PM
Youre very patient on this GTR video, it's driver didn't know much what he was doing there.

8 min, thats fast ! :thumb:

Ali M
24-05-2009, 11:14 AM
Originally posted by ott@May 22 2009, 07:28 PM
Youre very patient on this GTR video, it's driver didn't know much what he was doing there.

8 min, thats fast ! :thumb:
Think I would have lost my patience being stuck behind the GTR for so long!

y2blade
24-05-2009, 06:39 PM
lovely looking Mcoupe and a great trip report :) I really enjoyed reading it

how was the hotel? and adenau in general?
we are booked to stay in the same place later this year for my first ring trip, so keen to hear opinions of the place ahead of our visit

Adamt
24-05-2009, 08:13 PM
Great read, and great videos. Thanks for posting,

adam