Marc Sluszny is one step closer to his goal of completing the world's major 24-hour races, after scoring a seventh-place class finish in the grueling 24h-Rennen NÃ¼rburgring (Germany) on May 8. The Belgian adventurer has achieved international ...
Marc Sluszny is one step closer to his goal of completing the world's major 24-hour races, after scoring a seventh-place class finish in the grueling 24h-Rennen Nürburgring (Germany) on May 8. The Belgian adventurer has achieved international success in sports from sky surfing to Davis Cup tennis, but the Nürburgring race was one of his most challenging events.
A total of 210 cars in 21 classes started the 24-hour race on the daunting 25.378-kilometre Nürburgring Nordschleife circuit, battling weather conditions ranging from heavy rain to hail and temperatures just above freezing. 180,000 fans were in attendance.
Sluszny raced the No. 142 Kissling Motorsport Opel Astra Coupe with German drivers Stefan Kissling, Josef Klüber and Volker Strycek. Kissling qualified third on the 44-car A3 class grid with a lap of nine minutes 51.403 seconds.
Kissling drove first, followed by Klüber, Sluszny and Strycek. All four were hindered in their quest for victory. Kissling encountered trouble first, with a broken right-front half-shaft just past the one-hour mark. Klüber served a penalty at 2h48. Sluszny was thwarted when a wayward Porsche hit him as he started his first lap, at 4h15, resulting in a bent right-front suspension. The team recovered from a low of 29th to seventh in class by the 14th hour, but Strycek was back in the garage with a broken exhaust at 20h15. The ensuing pit stop dropped the group to 11th, but they returned to seventh in the final minutes of the race.
"The race here is completely nuts! You have to be crazy to race here in the 24 hours," Sluszny said. "To actually finish here is a hell of an achievement. I stress 'hell' because they call it the Grüne Hölle -- the Green Hell -- and they're right. To get out of this thing alive and to finish is something extraordinary."
Sluszny's next race will be les 24 Heures du Mans in France on June 18 and 19.