You don’t have to watch the UK’s Top Gear motoring show for long to realise that beyond the all too typical male bravado, there is one person whom stands head and shoulders above the prideful presenters of Clarkson, May and the Hamster. This person is their nemesis, more highly skilled than all of them put together and frankly they love and respect her. That person is Sabine Schmitz. The fastest driver of the torturous Nürburgring in Germany.
And this is why; Sabine not only out drives just about everyone, she set the lap record at Nürburgring at the age of 19 at 8 minutes 16 seconds in a Ford Sierra Cosworth. In October 2008 she set a new lap record for a non-turbocharged car at 7 minutes 07 seconds in a Porsche 997 RSR (Frikadelli Racing Team).
Nürburgring History and F1:
Nürburgring is not the little track you may have seen and possibly will see later this year in Formula 1 – no, it’s huge!! It’s 13 miles long, it’s a mountain race track and has 147 corners!
With steep inclines, descents and hairpin bends, it is not only a formidable test on the skill and stamina of any driver irrespective of skill level – but the car itself. Simply put, if the car is not in 100% top shape, it will not survive this assault.
Back in the 12th century Count Ulrich probably never imagined that one day, at the foot of his time-honoured Nürburg, the queen of racing courses would attract people from all over the world. After the Ring opened on 18th June 1927 it soon became clear what a great economic force this early form of the leisure industry was going to become in the entire region. Restaurants with guest rooms turned into hotels, meadows into car parks and the races were a blessing for what was one of the poorest regions in Germany. The story of the Nürburgring goes back eight decades – a period in which it has produced many stories, has thrilled many generations of racing drivers and fans and has become the economic powerhouse of the Eifel region.
Part of the track called the ‘Nordschleife’, still in use today was nick named ‘The Green Hell’ by Jackie Stewart. It is widely considered the toughest, most dangerous and most demanding purpose build race track in the world.
Born to the local hotel and restaurant owning Schmitz family, Sabine and her two elder sisters grew up in the “Hotel am Tiergarten” in Nürburg within the Nürburgring Nordschleife.
Sabine came to mass public attention driving one of the two BMW M5 Ring Taxi around the 13 mile long race track in an entertaining manner. As she once put it “Anyone can drive fast on an Autobahn, but drifting a car sideways around a bend at 140 is different”.
Conservative estimates say that Sabine has driven around the Nürburgring no less than 20,000 times, and she has become known as both the “Queen of the Nürburgring” and “the fastest taxi driver in the world”. Her company, Nürburgring - based Sabine Schmitz Motorsport, offers advanced driver training and a “Ring Taxi” service for passengers.
Her list of achievement is simply staggering by anyone’s account. She has raced for companies, driven all over the world and even put a Main Battle Tank through its paces. Furthermore she is an accomplished helicopter pilot. Ironically, Top Gear once raced an AH64 Apache Longbow, yet none of them could actually fly one – they might want to think about that.
Sabine is known worldwide, her Television career has brought her global attention putting her all too familiar smile, style and highly entertaining skill into our homes.
Basically, if you ever wanted to see men put in their place, then not only can this lady do it – but the sheer intimidation of such an amazing race track, simply destroys them. And lets be honest, Clarkson deserves it.
First up, to explain what Sabine is all about The BMW M5 RingTaxi
Ok, you get the idea, now lets see her with Top Gear (sadly the quality is low on these as the YouTube BBC page is yet to carry them.
Clarkson Diesel Jag Pt1
Clarkson Diesel Jag Pt2
Sabine Top Gear Ford Transit
This Year will see massive investment into the Nürburgring, in fact they are turning it into an all year round leisure facility with major upgrades and expansion costing around 252 million Euros. The four main areas of investment are in Racing, Adventure, Business and Holiday. They will be working with existing tourism service providers to make, frankly, one awesome site. From Rock concerts to Formula One and the myriad of other functions from driver training to the grueling Nürburgring 24hr race – Nürburgring will be, and IS, a must for anyone interested in motor sport at any level.
For more information regarding activities and events at Nürburgring, go to there website HERE
Sabine – present work + website
Sabine Schmitz continues to expand her awesome career to date and is still a keen Professional Racing Driver. She presently races for Team Frikadelli Racing and while there is the Sabine Schmitz Motosport Website, Sabine is very much involved in a real hands on capacity with her ALL NEW website Speedbee.de . At present it is mainly in German Language format, but Sabine tells me the English version is coming very soon.
For further information about Sabine, her work (past and present) and what she’s doing in the future, please do not hesitate going to her websites.
In conclusion; TWBrit, or moreover, I would like to take a moment to thank Ihre Meltem Yildiz at Dederichs Reinecke & Partner who are Nürburgring’s PR Team and special TWBrit gratitude to Sabine Schmitz for information and help with writing this article.