The revised plans for the AvD Oldtimer Grand Prix (7th to 9th August) are increasingly taking shape. After the organisers were forced to revisit many details of the classics weekend at the Nürburgring due to the corona pandemic, the planned programme on the race track has now been finalised. The 48th running of Continental Europe’s biggest classics racing event will feature eleven races, special rounds and presentations, with some changes having been made to the programme compared to the original plans. The new elements include the Historic Touring Car and GT Trophy (HTGT) being organised under the umbrella of Fahrergemeinschaft Historischer Rennsport (FHR). A 120-minute endurance race for touring cars and GTs on the Grand Prix circuit is new on the timetable as well. The round billed as ‘AvD-OGP / FHR Endurance Cup’ replaces the previously planned AvD Historic Marathon on the Nordschleife which proved unfeasible due to organisational issues. By contrast, the special round of Formula One legends from the 70s to the 90s marks a new programme highlight: the round that was already part of the originally planned programme intends to put spectacular historic Formula One cars emphasising Ferrari models back on track. As a guest of honour motorsport legend Jacky Ickx is going to travel to the Nürburgring and participate in the special round in his original car from 1971. The next steps in the event preparations have already been initiated: together with the Nürburgring management team the organisers are currently working on an event concept specifically taking infection protection and hygienic measures into account that will subsequently have to be reviewed and approved by the relevant authorities.
In view of the pandemic situation, the organisers of the AvD Oldtimer Grand Prix are facing unusual challenges. “Plans for this year’s event were well advanced when we were forced to start from scratch again,” says AvD Sport President Volker Strycek. The former DTM driver takes the wheel from time to time again in historic racing and, as a result, is intimately familiar with the event as the organiser as well as from the cockpit perspective. Consequently, he can provide a first-hand account of the effort that has to be invested. “Given that many foreign participants are unable to join us in the current situation, we unfortunately had to cancel a number of very attractive races,” he says. “Even the AvD Historic Marathon on the Nordschleife that had been planned for a long time proved unfeasible under the current conditions. This is particularly painful for us because all of us had very much been looking forward especially to this race. Instead, we managed to gain a very nice series, the HTGT.” The new event concept specifically focused on infection protection measures poses a major challenge. Some of the supporting events had to be removed from the programme – for the first time in many years the Mercedes-Arena will not be used as an event area. Many processes can be staggered due to the stretched programme. Even so, the organisers are endeavouring to retain as much of the event’s spirit as possible in collaboration with the Nürburgring management team. This includes affording spectators the opportunity to enjoy historic racing, if at all possible. “Obviously, the protection of everyone involved in the event is central to all considerations,” says Volker Strycek. “We plan to protect spectators, participants and organisers against an infection as effectively as possible. As a result, the AvD Oldtimer Grand Prix in many areas is going to present itself in ways that differ from recent years.”
Even so, there will be plenty to see and watch at the AvD OGP weekend – including on the Nordschleife. For instance, on Friday, the Trackday will be held for the fifth time and on Saturday and Sunday historic cars will likely be seen on track time and again. Parked in the paddock will not only be the cars of the participants in races, presentations and special rounds but also some other historic treats: the participants in the Vintage Sports Car Trophy will be joined by the vehicles of the Pre-War Cars Meeting. They will be accommodated in the historic paddock along with the rally cars of the ‘Slowly Sideways’ drivers’ association. The Grand Prix paddock will again play host to the Sports Auto Show at which the owners of historic vehicles proudly present their classics in style and can even offer them for sale. The organisers have come up with a number of measures to keep the situation from becoming too cramped. “For instance, we decided not to set up the Historic Paddock Club and the drivers-teams marquee,” says AvD Sport President Volker Strycek. “This allows us to create additional space in the paddock and reduce contacts which are not necessary.” With details like these the organisers are hoping to be able to run the 2020 AvD Oldtimer Grand Prix. Strycek: “We are continuing to work on a concept at full stretch and on closely coordinating our efforts with our partners at the Nürburgring and the relevant authorities.”
The programme of the 48th AvD Oldtimer Grand Prix at a glance
Races / special rounds / presentations
(As of: 24th June 2020 · Subject to change)