Is Porsche chasing after another Nurburgring record?
Two of the fastest, most legendary cars in Porsche’s long and storied motorsport history will share track time at the upcoming Nurburgring 24-hour race which began yesterday, May 12. The 919 Evo Hybrid – a transformed Le Mans and FIA World Endurance Championship winning car – will complete a parade lap of the Nordschleife with the 956 C prototype that won every title in the World Sportscar Championship from 1982 to 1984 and still holds the outright track record.
It’s a car that has been unleashed from the championship regulations in order to chase lap times, with Porsche smashing the track record at Spa-Francorchamps last month. No stopwatches will be present next weekend as the cars will follow the safety car and bypass the start-and-finish section because of the grid formation for the 24-hour race. However, just because Porsche won’t chase a lap time on May 12 doesn’t mean the company won’t chase the overall lap record at some point before or after the 24-hour event, the symbolism and significance of pairing the two cars together is rather blatant.
On May 28 in 1983, during practice for the 1000-kilometre race at the Nurburgring, Stefan Bellof lapped the Nordschleife piloting a 956 C in an absurd 6:11.13 minutes with an average speed of more than 200 km/h. The 919 Evo and 956 C will be driven by Timo Bernhard, and Hans-Joachim Stuck, respectively. “I’m not only impressed by Stefan Bellof’s great performances”, Bernhard explains, “he must have been a really great guy. Whoever knew him seems to have adored him. His 1983 unbeaten lap record at the Nordschleife is terrific. I feel honoured to accompany a historic Porsche 956 C with the 919 Evo.”