Norisring Circuit - A Surreal Place for Racing in the City

February 14, 2016
Alexander S

  • Norisring circuit DTM audi Germany race rennen 2016

Norisring in the German city of Nuremberg is one of the oldest street racing circuits in Europe, built on a site with dark history, opened in May of 1947. Racing on this circuit is one the most popular events in DTM championship, and it has BMW, Audi and Mercedes cars making noise around the track in early summer.

Norisring circuit – a place with dark history

After the World War II was finished, local authorities of Nuremberg decided to organize racing events around the huge 360 metres long grandstand which remained in the place of former Nazi party rally grounds. The surrounding area was badly damaged by Allies bombing, but the place around the stand was in better condition and was quickly adopted as the location for racing. Races were held on the public traffic road, and Norisring, through the years, became very popular not just among the drivers, but also among the spectators who were closer to the action than on the regular racing tracks.

Picture of full stands at Norisring circuit in 1947

Full stands at Norisring (1947)

Easy to access

Located in the south-east of the city, near the Dutzendteich park and Franken stadium, Norisring is easy to access, but during race weekends, the best way to get there is by public transport. Special trains are regular and Franken station is very close to the main stand while buses from city center are also often. Good thing for race weekend ticket holders is that they can ride for free in the public transport of the German city.

Packed Norisring stands during a DTM race

Norisring stands during a DTM race

Complete DTM results at the Norisring circuit from 2011-2019

Norisring should not be confused with Nurburgring

Norisring derived its name from Noris, the old name of the city of Nuremberg, as Nürnberg, which is German name of the town, would lead to confusion with the already famous Nürburgring. In 1950, the competition was organized for a new name and Norisring proved to be the most popular.

Layout map of the Norisring track in 1951

Layout of the track in 1951

Track configuration varied through the decades but was always relatively short and very simple. From 1949 to 1951, Norisring also included figure eight layout, but since 1971, the 2.3 km layout track is unchanged, with only eight turns and long wide straights.

DTM race as season highlight

The first race at Norisring was held in 1947 and almost 60.000 people turned out to watch the event for which the fuel was provided by US army. Motorcycle races were in the center of attention in the first decade of Norisring, but in the 1960s, car racing became dominant in the season calendar.

Video – DTM 2015 race at Norisring circuit

Series like German DRM sports car championships and the World Endurance Championship were regular at Norisring, while in 1990s and later, the race at Norisring became one of the most important and most popular events in Porsche Carrera Cup, Audi Sport TT Cup, DTM and F3 Euroseries, always held in joyous atmosphere with huge crowd attendance. The DTM race, with Audi, BMW and Mercedes cars, is definitely the highlight of the season at Norisring and attracts around 200.000 people each year.

An image of Mercedes AMG, Audi and BMW DTM racing at Norisring

Mercedes AMG, Audi and BMW – DTM race at Norisring

Visitors also could stay at Norisring overnight as local authorities and Nuremberg Motorsport Club set the camping place in the vicinity of the track, but everyone who is interested to book a place there must be very quick because of the great interest and hosts are considering only online applications.

Two fatal crashes at the Norisring circuit

Sadly, one of the best known and most popular drivers of his time lost his life at Norisring. The Mexican Pedro Rodriguez died in 1971 when his Ferrari 512 hit the bridge wall and went on fire. That tragedy caused the track shortening, reducing speed in corners. Another driver who died at Norisring was the Hungarian Csaba Kesjar who lost his life in 1988, during an F3 race. His brakes failed and he crashed into the tyre barrier at full speed, dying instantly.

Pedro Rodriguez memorial plaque at the Norisring

Pedro Rodriguez memorial plaque at Norisring

Norisring lap record time holder is Jean-Louis Schlesser. Driving Sauber C9 at Supercup Group C race in 1988, he set the lap time of 47.79 seconds.

Map of the Norisring circuit in Nuremberg

Map of Norisring circuit, Nuremberg


Address : Zeppelinstraße 1, 90471 Nürnberg, Germany

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