BILSTEIN at the Nürburgring: Legends never give up

Automotive-sector | Engineering | Our Brand | After a victory in 2016 and fifth place in 2017, thyssenkrupp Bilstein returns as a contender to the Nürburgring in 2018. Naturally, the suspension experts of Ennepetal have ambition. They have captioned the 46th ADAC 24-hour race for themselves and for all partners with a special motto: THE LEGEND STRIKES BACK.

The history of the 24-hour race at the Nürburgring is legendary. It began in 1970 and from the outset was dedicated to the popular sport. The huge starting grid and the array, almost four times the size, of bold men and women behind the wheel, paired with a very flexible set of rules, make the race unique, every year. thyssenkrupp Bilstein is one of the “originals”, a reliable partner for decades – for the Nürburgring and above all for the race teams who are facing this indescribable challenge again and again: 24 hours through the Green Hell.

Two years ago, racing ace Manuel Metzger won the 24h race at the Nürburgring for his AMG team BLACK FALCON.
Two years ago, racing ace Manuel Metzger won the 24h race at the Nürburgring for his AMG team BLACK FALCON.
Enjoying the victory: Manuel Metzger and his BLACK FALCON team mates celebrate the first place at the Nürburgring in 2016.
Enjoying the victory: Manuel Metzger and his BLACK FALCON team mates celebrate the first place at the Nürburgring in 2016.
In 2017, the BILSTEIN partners didn't make it to the first place. The weather just didn't care, fortunately.
In 2017, the BILSTEIN partners didn't make it to the first place. The weather just didn't care, fortunately.

Entering the Green Hell as the hunted ones

“We have experienced and celebrated great wins with our partners. The most recent we were able to determine with AMG and BLACK FALCON on the last lap.  A real Eifel thriller, which began two years ago.  Likewise, we have experienced painful defeats, which have also shaped us”, is how Florian Hägemann, Head of Marketing at thyssenkrupp Bilstein, sums it up. “Sometimes you enter the Ring as the hunted and sometimes you enter as the hunter. In 2018, we are once again hunting, we are the challenger.  A role, which is not unfamiliar to us. A role, which we actually really like”, adds Martin Flick, Head of Motorsport at thyssenkrupp Bilstein. Confidence doesn’t arise from approximations. Because the Ennepetal suspension experts alongside AMG and BLACK FALCON have already made progress in the 24-hour race season: a perfect overall victory at the 24-hour in Dubai and the 6-hour at Nürburgring.

Team BLACK FALCON has already won the qualification of this year's edition – a good omen for the final 24h race?

Team BLACK FALCON has already won the qualification of this year’s edition – a good omen for the final 24h race?

Six cars trust in Bilstein dampers

At the 24-hour race at the Nürburgring, the team is using six cars this year. The three BLACK FALCON Mercedes-AMG GT3 of the SP 9 class have chances of winning the overall title in the Green Hell. Also in this class: The Lamborghini Huracan GT3 by Konrad Motorsport and the Ferrari 488 GT3 by Wochenspiegel Team Monschau. In the SP 9-LG Aston Martin Racing sends the Aston Martin Vantage GT3 into the race. The three teams all rely on a modular damper system with 4-way high-performance adjustment system from thyssenkrupp Bilstein. These motorsport shock absorbers offer a very wide range of independent damping force adjustments and with one rebound and three bump forces individual setting options.

With the adjustable dampers featuring a 10-step scale system of thyssenkrupp Bilstein, motor sport professionals are perfectly equipped for every track conditions – be it rain, sun or every other challenge.

With the adjustable dampers featuring a 10-step scale system of thyssenkrupp Bilstein, motor sport professionals are perfectly equipped for every track conditions – be it rain, sun or every other challenge.

In addition several cars that are equipped with 2-way adjustment system from BILSTEIN hope for class victories. These include a Porsche 991 GT3 Cup MR II, a Mercedes-AMG GT4 and a Porsche 991 Carrera by BLACK FALCON, as well as an Aston Martin Vantage GT8 from the AMR Performance Center, among others. The multiple adjustment options in rebound and bump are essential for motorsports. But more adjustment options also create a greater margin for error. In order to reduce the efforts of meticulous documentation of all changes thyssenkrupp Bilstein has invented a 10-step scale system with click feedback for the adjustment range. Each set-up variant can be defined and documented with a numerical code.

The perfect set-up for every racing situation

The thyssenkrupp Bilstein concept to make set-up as easy as possible starts even earlier, though. Pre-calculated physical shock absorber models allow the pioneer of gas-pressure shock absorber technology to supply a basic setup for most cars which then only requires small adjustments in the further development by the team mechanics. If the fine adjustment turns out to be the wrong solution or if the track conditions change abruptly – as so often with rain at the Nürburgring – it only takes a few clicks to use an alternative set-up or to reset to the neutral position. Another advantage: no tools are required for adjustment, which shortens conversion time even further. This allows the teams to prepare different setups in advance – for example for different weather conditions or drivers – and to write them down as numerical codes.

At the Nürburgring, the legend strikes back

The big goals for the Nürburgring are perfectlyin line with the brand statement of thyssenkrupp Bilstein: Drive the legend. “Legends never give up – they always strike back” says Florian Hägemann. “And when it’s at the Nürburgring Nordschleife, for us that means we’re coming home. It’s here that we test our products – under the hardest of conditions, on the most dangerous race track of the world. The desire to win the 24-hour race is an inner drive for us. This is what we work for time and time again – persistently, purposefully, with all our partners.”

For this reason BILSTEIN has written something big on the flags this year: The legend strikes back. The ambitious motto for the 46th ADAC Zurich 24-hour race is equally a tribute to all the thyssenkrupp Bilstein partners who have received a special platform in years gone by with the thyssenkrupp Bilstein LEGENDS, concludes Martin Flick: “We are looking forward to the new requirements of the 24-hour race, we are ready and in support of all partners, fans and friends who are using our shock absorbers and for those who would like to once again have a cool and hopefully successful time at the Ring.”

Marketing can be fun: For the 24h race at the Nürburgring, BILSTEIN relies on the charm of its LEGENDS series and shouts out to their competitors: The legend strikes back! Similarities to famous space tales possible...

Marketing can be fun: For the 24h race at the Nürburgring, BILSTEIN relies on the charm of its LEGENDS series and shouts out to their competitors: The legend strikes back! Similarities to famous space tales possible…

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