The uncertain future of the Nurburgring

The uncertain future of the Nurburgring

The future of Nurburgring - and therefore of any races to be held there - was put in doubt this week when the government cancelled the lease with the operators. Dieter Rencken analyses what will happen with the legendary track now

Like nostalgia, the Nurburgring sure ain't what it used to be. Where once its daunting Nordschleife annually filled even the most fearless Formula 1 drivers with utter dread until it was removed from the calendar in the wake of Niki Lauda's well-documented 1976 inferno, the 'Newburgring' now stages Germany's Grosse Preis on odd years – with Hockenheim hosting the evens.

This agreement was signed in 2007, but became effective in 2009, with the first race under the five-race (each) deal being hosted by Nurburgring GmbH (NG) – a company 90 per cent owned by the Rhine Palatinate, with the remaining shares held by Kreis Ahrweiler, the district within which the Eifel circuit falls that year.

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