70s and 80s

Flashback

An era comes to an end

The oil crisis, new regulations and, last but not least, the reconstruction of the StRecken in the 1980s robbed the race of the magic of earlier years.

The first two years of the 1970s are still dominated by Porsche. At the Nürburgring, the 908 in its latest version is unbeatable. Ferrari's heavy 512S sports car doesn't stand a chance against the speedy runabouts from Zuffenhausen. Der Brite Vic Elford sorgt gleich zweimal für Porsche Gesamtsiege. Nach seinem Landsmann Stirling Moss wird Elford als der erfolgreichste Fahrer in die Geschichte des 1000 Kilometer Rennens eingehen. 

In 1972, Ferrari makes a comeback. The 312PB in the hands of Jacky Ickx and his teammates proves to be the fastest vehicle on the Nordschleife, especially because Porsche has since given the 908 into private hands and the car is hardly developed any further.

There is no successor in sight either, which means that until 1974 the overall victories fall to Ferrari, Matra and Alfa Romeo. The second half of the '70s is heralded in 1976 by the first victory of a BMW. 

New regulations put an end to the fast three-liter prototypes - from now on, it's mainly the Porsche 935s in various versions that dominate the action. This has not necessarily contributed to the attractiveness of the race, with spectator numbers tending steadily downward. The diversity of brands and the associated high number of participants, for which the 1000 kilometer race was famous for a long time, are now also a thing of the past.

To fill up the starting fields, touring cars are allowed to take part in the races for the first time from 1976. This remained the case until the last race on the Nordschleife in 1983. The 1980s saw the return of prototypes in the form of Group 6 and Group C cars. Lancia appears on the scene and secures the overall victory in 1982.

Then Porsche comes along with the 956, with which the Zuffenhausen company brings the last laurels of victory in a 1000 kilometer race on the Nordschleife to Stuttgart a year later. Jacky Ickx and Jochen Mass win the last race at the Nürburgring, which is already being rebuilt, on the legendary circuit, which has already lost part of its identity after being stripped of the entire start-finish area. Thus the era of the 1000 kilometer races on the Nürburgring-Nordschleife finally comes to an end.

In the following years, further races with the "1000 kilometer" title were held on the new Grand Prix circuit, but these never reached the glory of the legendary 44 laps through the "Green Hell", which made the hearts of the many spectators and also the participants beat faster for 30 years.