HockenheimHockenheim

Hockenheimring Baden-W├╝rttemberg
Specs:
Circuit direction:
Clockwise
Circuit length:
4.574 Km
Number of turns:
17

The German town of Hockenheim has become synonymous with motor racing thanks to its famous circuit, which has transformed from a high-speed blast through the forests to a thoroughly modern autodrome.

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Hockenheim

Motorsports History since the 1930s

The origins of the circuit began with a conversation in 1930 between timekeeper Ernst Christ and his young assistant, who suggested putting on a race in their home town of Hockenheim. Taken with the idea, Christ took the idea to the mayor, Philipp Klein, and (appropriately) on Christmas Day 1931, the municipal council unanimously approved the plans for the new circuit.

Building work began on March 23, 1932, and only two months later on May 25 the first motorcycle race in Hockenheim got under way. For this small town, it marked the beginning of a long association with motor sport.

The essentially triangular course began on the edge of the town and headed out into the forest roads, before looping back on itself. Just six years later, in 1938, the circuit was fundamentally changed. The triangular course was modified with the inclusion of a fast curve at its eastern end, known as the Ostkurve. The familiar oval-shape now emerged and was to be a feature of the layout for the next 63 years.

History within the 24H SERIES

The Hockenheimring Baden-Württemberg is the home of the German F1 Grand Prix for many years.

In 1999, plans were announced for a wholesale revision to the circuit. The FIA had demanded changes if Hockenheim was to retain the Grand Prix. At 6.8km it was felt to be too long and with large parts heading through forest sections it was not a spectator-friendly facility. A public consultation was held and several layouts discussed, with the aim of creating more overtaking possibilities.

 

Information

Location:
Am Motodrom (321.64 km) 68766 Hockenheim, Germany
Time Zone:
CEST (UTC+1)
FIA Grade:
1
Lap record:
1:13.780 by Kimi Raikonnen (F1), 2004

On December 21, 2001, Hockenheim-Ring GmbH received approval for the project, and work began on February 4, 2002. The Hermann Tilke-penned revisions cost of some 62 million Euros and boasted impressive new grandstands which boosted capacity from 83,000 to 120,000. In deference to the public financing which had supported the renovations, the official name of the circuit was changed to Hockenheimring Baden-Württemberg at this time.

The stadium section remained mostly intact, despite a new surface and a tighter Nordkurve (first turn). However, the circuit was dramatically shortened, with the long, forested straights section chopped off in favour of more tight corners. The old forest section was torn up and replanted with trees, eliminating any chance of using the old course either for future F1 events or for historic car events. As the years pass by, only the line in the trees gives any evidence that a circuit ever passed through the forest.