The first day of the ADAC TotalEnergies 24h Nürburgring was dominated by BMW: the provisional best time in practice on Thursday went to the Rowe-BMW #98, in which American John Edwards already set a time of 8:14.771 minutes in Qualifying 1 in the afternoon, which no competitor was able to beat again in the three-hour Qualifying 2 in the evening. The 8:15.936 minutes of the second-placed Walkenhorst-BMW #102 were also set in the morning. For the Munich-based team, it was a fitting start to the anniversary weekend of BMW M GmbH, which was founded 50 years ago.
However, the competitors' best cars were not far behind, leaving fans hoping for an exciting 50th edition of the 24h Nürburgring. Third place went to the Bilstein-Mercedes-AMG #12, fourth to the Car-Collection-Audi #22. Behind the third BMW from Team Schubert in fifth place, the Dinamic-Porsche #28 and the Aston Martin from TF Sport lined up in positions six and seven. In total, the first 14 cars were within less than five seconds of each other.
Individual time trial for pole position is the highlight on Friday
The fight for the starting positions at the ADAC TotalEnergies 24h Nürburgring continues on Friday: at 14:10, the focus is mainly on the teams in the second and third starting groups. In the evening individual time trials, the order in Group 1 will be decided - and, of course, the pole position. The first of the two top qualifying sessions will be released at 17:50. After the dice have been cast at 20:00, the programme continues with the Falken Drift Show in the Müllenbachschleife as well as a pitwalk and autograph session for all teams in the pit lane. Tickets for all days of the event are still available at the continuously open box offices and spectator areas at the Nordschleife. The live stream is available at www.24h-rennen.de/live as well as on YouTube, and the top qualifying session will be broadcast live from the Nürburgring by TV partner NITRO from 6 p.m. onwards.
Campsites still accessible
Already on Wednesday, the Adenauer Racing Day kicked off the event weekend with numerous fans creating a festival atmosphere in the racing community at the Nürburgring. This atmosphere continued on Thursday as the first day of the event, when Mario Fuchs from Grafschaft won the "Feste Nürburg" performance test in a Mitsubishi Lancer Evo 9 in the Circuit Challenge RCN. Later, the packed stands around the tradition-steeped Nordschleife and the darkness illuminated by spotlight fingers and barbecue fires gave the spectators goosebumps, and not just the spectators. "It's so awesome to drive in front of fans again," enthused Maro Engel (Mercedes-AMG Team GetSpeed #4). "It's the first time in two years that the stands are full again, which is really special. What's being built up there is just terrific, you can really feel the support. Thanks to the fans for everything, and I'm happy that everyone is finally back." Many other drivers agreed, with Markus Winkelhock (Scherer Sport Team Phoenix #16), for example, speaking: "I think every driver can confirm that it's great to finally have fans at the track again. This atmosphere around the Nordschleife resonates subconsciously in every lap." Anyone who wants to enjoy this atmosphere live is still welcome at the Nürburgring. Even though some of the campsites have been fully booked, campers who decide to come on short notice can still find accommodation around the circuit.