DTM

Light test at Nurburgring

Qualifying at night, that has never happened in the DTM before. During the seventh round of the DTM at the Nürburgring (August 15-17), this will become reality. Super-Pole at the short circuit lay-out of the Nürburgring will be taking place in...

Qualifying at night, that has never happened in the DTM before. During the seventh round of the DTM at the Nürburgring (August 15-17), this will become reality. Super-Pole at the short circuit lay-out of the Nürburgring will be taking place in the dark, just before the world championship boxing match. An undisputed highlight for fans and drivers alike. In order to be prepared for the changed conditions, Abt-Audi, Mercedes-Benz and Opel completed the "light test" at the Nürburgring recently.

For this purpose, light balloons were installed on the short circuit of the Nürburgring that are flooding wide parts of the track in a smooth light, providing plenty of visibility. The balloons, raging up into the air from poles of approx. 6 metres high, secured a safe ride, because their light didn't blind the drivers.

Mattias Ekström, who had specially come down from Sweden for this test, was impressed: "I never thought that it would be this light." His race engineer Alexander Stehlig created the best possible testing conditions: in order to simulate the light of the Abt-Audi TT-R, he had mounted the LED headlights of the race car on a production car. "I am always happy with new challenges and ideas, and Super-Pole at night really is a great idea," the Swede enthused. "Spectators will experience things they have never seen before. For instance, the exhaust flames of our cars can be seen much better, this really is spectacular." For Mercedes-Benz, team manager Hans-Jürgen Mattheis and chief technician Gerhard Ungar tested the conditions.

Opel's motorsport director Volker Strycek tested the artificial light conditions from a current DTM-car. The OPC Team Phoenix, located at the Nürburgring, brought Timo Schider's race car to the circuit for the test. After several runs, Strycek's conclusion was positive: "The light conditions really are sufficient, it shouldn't cause a problem for the drivers." However, he added, "there shouldn't be any dark spots on the track," the entire 3.629 km distance of the track must be lit, so that suddenly occurring lights don't blind the drivers.

In order to provide utmost safety for the drivers, light towers, floodlight-like lamps, will bbe installed around the Nürburgring next to the balloons. Anyone that knows the Eifel also knows how varying the weather can be there. Even though the balloons have been constructed to withstand winds of up to 6 Beaufort and rain, organisers want to be on the safe side. This also guarantees that drivers can look into any section of the track and that the entire track is being lit at its best.

-dtm-

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About this article
Series DTM
Drivers Mattias Ekström , Volker Strycek , Gerhard Ungar