View Full Version : November 11th - 15th

Dan Germain
15-11-2011, 05:54 PM
This was quite unexpected, having done a few trips on 2 wheels....

I've been riding all year round for 10 or more years, but this year (getting older) I decided to get a car for the more inclement weather. Expecting to find a disposable tin box with long MOT, I ended up with the E46 330ci, a tad over budget, but at under 3000 I was happy.

Very happy

I really hadn't thought I would have such a solid car, I have driven a '55' 330 which understeered and protested at any decent corner speed, this one didn't.

I had to get to Germany, Bren was holidaying in Dollendorf this year, so the trip was booked. Bren's 'off' followed but he still had room for me.

Usual planning, but very much easier though when ready to leave, chuck everything in the boot. Previous trips on the R1 were the same apart from packing valuables in a rucsac, and undies in a tail pack on the bike (just in case I got robbed en route). Then dressing in leathers and waterproofs, overlapping all layers to ensure dryness!

Headed south about 5.30am, tunnel at 9.45, petrol in Belgium about 2.00pm, Nurburg about 4.00pm. One step for fuel and Earworm's 'Teach yourself German' on the CD player - heaven!

Bren's about 5pm, then down to CC for a couple of hours.

Woke to a foggy morning, no need to rush, I had filled up at Dottinger Hohe and bought 8 laps. Felt fine, until talking to Andy, then started to get nervous. I would have been more confident in the wet on the R1 than driving, I was right back to basics.

We waited for the fog to clear, and when it didn't they opened anyway!

The first lap was an education, with me learning as a passenger.

So I took the drivers seat and headed out. Thanks to a continuous narration I found a pace that was better than I could have expected. I have found on a bike (for me) that there are really only 2 states of adhesion, wet and dry. But mildly damp can be approached much faster on 4 wheels.

Hocheichen, I found it unique in it's ability to be slippier than all other corners
Schwedenkreuz, much easier on 2 wheels
Miss, Hit, Miss, scary in/on any vehicle
Bergwerk to Karussell, one hell of a climb
Karussell, again much easier on 2 wheels, your legs act as additional suspension, try it some time!
Standard brakes (after 11 years) are a bit shit

All in all a great weekend...
Thanks to Andy
Thanks to Bren
Thanks to the etiquette I experienced both days (no turds with flashing lights!)
Thanks to BMW for building a car that after 11 years and over 100K miles remained unflustered by the ordeal (apart from brakes)

With a video ban in place, I cobbled together a video of what it may have felt like using Corel draw and Sellotape. I was there as a tourist, no records broken, and no armco damage

...now where's my demon tweeks catalogue...


15-11-2011, 08:28 PM

Really like the perspective from that camera position,
it feels like a pax-lap of the 'Ring on one of those racing sidecar jobbies.

Looks like you had a good trip. :thumb:
It must have taken quite a bit of mental re-calibration to go from bike-laps to car-laps.

Tim in Yorkshire
15-11-2011, 08:28 PM
Car sounds good :thumb:

16-11-2011, 09:35 AM
Great vid and good to know you enjoyed your trip :thumb:

Dan Germain
16-11-2011, 10:15 AM
The re-calibration needed was more going from usual car driving to 'faster' car driving. Riding the R1 on the road is not a million miles away from 'Ring or trackday riding to be honest, you tend to 'go for it' quite regularly. The past 21 years car driving have been simply A to B transport, relying on the bikes for fun. To redline the 330 through the gears seemed a bit unnatural, I was short-shifting most of the time. Or I'm just a bit lazy!

16-11-2011, 11:13 AM
This you?

Dan Germain
16-11-2011, 11:24 AM
This you?

Nice one! Yep that's me, and look I'm near an apex!

16-11-2011, 01:08 PM
nice to see you again dan and glad u enjoyed your trip.. look forward to seeing u next year and taking u for a lap in the mx5

16-11-2011, 04:06 PM
Nice to meet you at the weekend

I have some pics of you, even them are not the best