It’s breakfast time, and with my metallic gray cave I’m standing right next to the green hell, you just can’t get any closer. I’m a big racing fan. But so far I only knew the 24 hours in the Eifel from television.
The race has existed since 1984, day and night it goes at full throttle along a track that is exactly 25.378 kilometers long and includes both the Grand Prix track and the Nordschleife.
Pole position on the fence
No problem for the Marco Polo, it climbs all inclines with its turbo diesel and takes every left with it. In order to then hit the irons in good time in front of the “needs campsite”, as it is called at the Nürburgring.
Race camping is a very special experience. If you’re lucky, you won’t get the parking space somewhere far away in the parking lot, but have the pole position at the fence.
You can’t reserve, the race for the best place is made by the one who is far ahead on the starting grid. In other words, come early to ensure a good view.
The places here are called “Schwalbenschwanz” or “Brünnchen”, just like the sections of the race track. The entry or parking fee is 17 euros for one night per person.
Camping in a van from 10 euros per day
35 euros for three days. I’m lucky, my Marco Polo counts as a van, it only costs 10 euros a day. And then you still need the actual ticket for the race – you can take part from 34 euros. All in all, not cheap fun, but a great one.
I need a pit stop. Since my camper doesn’t have a toilet on board, I go in search of an official run-off zone. In addition to the blue mobile homes, there are even shower facilities and water-flushing toilets for a fee.
A racing adventure can be so relaxing
Alternatively, you can stay overnight at the campsite at the Nürburgring not far away. The operator promises that everything that is forbidden elsewhere is allowed on the 1,200 parking spaces there: campfires with guitar music, for example.
It doesn’t matter, for me engine noises are music too. It’s evening, I climb out of the cockpit into the pop-up roof, fall onto the mattress with plenty of contact pressure – and bring myself to the ideal line.
While the cars heat past me at night, the parking heater warms me up. And while the drivers do their laps downstairs, I only sometimes turn from one side to the other. A racing adventure can be so relaxing.