During the 2023 Track Day Season, the weather gods must have forgotten to enter our dates into the "good weather section". At least partially! At this stage, 3 out of 7 Track Days were wet - some more, some less!
Wet doesn't describe the conditions our participants and us experienced during our latest Bilster Berg Track Day though! That the German (and other) weather service issued a severe weather warning for the day prior to our Track Day already wasn't a good sign. While most of the really bad stuff passed through during the night, we still expierenced torrential rain in the morning which, on a track like Bilster Berg, is especially tricky.
Luckily the Pitboxes, or let's rather call them Hangars, are extremely spacious so while it's uncomfortable outside, everyone has lots of space and time to drink a coffee or get a little snack in the dry!
We also saw a lot of groups forming renting one of their own hangars to get some shelter and have a space to work on their cars, change tyres and enjoy the community together.
As expected during these kind of conditions, check-in for this Track Day was relaxed as just a few drivers arrived early in the morning, while the rest came at different times spread out almost until noon.
Once the lights turned green at 9:00am sharp, the track remained eerily quiet. It took a couple of minutes until the first brave souls went out to the track for some first slow sighting laps.
While normal amounts of rain are not that much of a problem, the torrential rain we experienced has led to some puddles forming on track making it necessary to be extra careful to check out the dangerspots and make sure you're not being surprised by some unexpected aqua planing!
Unfortunately, but as expected (to be honest), it did not take long until the first driver got caught out by the tricky conditions. Luckuly, he got out of it with only some scratches to the front bumper and some minor damage.
After this little wake-up call, the Track Day went on surpsingly smooth without any further incidents. Once the rain stopped around noon, you could feel the excitiment rising in the Paddock. Would we get some dry laps?
Almost everyone was talking about it during the lunch break - whether sitting together at the table or waiting in line at the food truck for the obligatory burger.
With every lap, the track got dryer. First the "racing line" showed up as a dry trajectory. Now those conditions are especially tricky as you have to leave the dry line to overtake - now everyone has to work together and be extra careful!
At around three a clock and with two hours to go at our Bilster Berg Open Pitlane Track Day, the track was almost dry. For the first time we saw a good amount of cars on track - the speed slowly increased as people gained confidence.
It was great seeing everyone picking up the pace during the last two hours and even though there were some damp patches here and there, we did not have any incidents. This has also been the first ever Track Day we had, where not even one of the notroious bollards have been damaged!
Do you want to see all of the pictures of this Track Day? Check out our Gallery HERE.