Back in July, we told you about a private team that set out to break the Nürburgring record with a Viper ACR. Since the story ran though, the team went on to improve its record run.
The first two runs by the ACR clocked in at 7:03.23 and a 7:03.45 — valiant efforts for sure. However, it still fell 11 seconds short of the Lamborghini Huracan Performante, the current record holder at 6:52.01.
This week though, the private team took one more shot at the record. Unfortunately, despite its best efforts it only managed to knock a few seconds off the previous time with the session best being 7:01.3.
The team hoped it could continue the runs and eventually break into the sub-seven second barrier. However, a series of misfortunes quickly dashed its hopes.
With German race car driver Luca Stolz behind the wheel, the ACR cut a tire at nearly 170mph. Stolz, by some miracle, saved the car from ending up in the wall. After a fresh set of rubber, Stolz set out for another run. This time a loose drain plug in the rear end dumped oil all over the track. Unfortunately, in the process, it seized the diff and put the car out of commission.
Thankfully, the team had a backup car and let driver Lance Arnold have a go to see what he could do. Weirdly, Arnold cut the same tire in nearly the same spot at Stolz at 160mph. Arnold wasn’t as lucky though. The ACR hit the guardrail, spun across the track, and hit the wall, totaling the car. Thankfully, Arnold walked away without injury.
With both cars now out of commission and a hefty bill to repair the guardrails, the record attempt was over.
The team can still be proud though. With all the ridiculous ‘Ring records, there was at least something it could claim the title of. Sure enough, the Viper ACR now holds the claim as the fastest American, rear wheel drive, and manual transmission car to lap the ‘Ring. This shows no matter how much you come up short if you dig enough you can find victory.
In addition to the record, the team can also claim it’s the only private, crowd-funded team to attempt a Nürburgring record too.
Hopefully, with the team’s success, this will open the door for more private teams to take on track records when manufacturers don’t.