NÜRBURGRING, GERMANY, August 1, 2012 - When the phone rings, sometimes you don't ask questions, you just say "yes". Shane Lewis did just that when he received a phone call earlier this week recruiting him to make a last minute flight to Germany's famed racecourse to compete in the VLN Six Hours of Nürburgring. The Jupiter, Fla.-resident is the defending class winner of the 6h ADAC Ruhr-Pokal-Rennen with Vic Rice (San Rafael, CA). The pairing will reprise their role in the same Hamburg Racing Team (HRT) Aston Martin Vantage N24, No. 203 for this August 4 event, they raced here at the Nürburgring 24 in May.
Lewis has dominated the 15.753-mile (25.359 km), 73-turn Nordschleife - the name of the full Nürburgring racetrack - in recent years winning the 24 Hour race ('10), two victories here in the Six Hour ('09, '11) and taking two other 24 Hour podiums ('04, '10). The multiple-time American Le Mans Series (ALMS) and GRAND-AM race winner also enjoys a pair of GT podiums on the "Grand Prix" circuit when the ALMS visited here in '99 and 2000. The unparalleled success for an American at a track considered one of the greatest racing challenges in the history of the sport has made Lewis a local celebratory in Germany and widely considered America's Nürburgring master. In fact, of his seven different starts on both circuits, Lewis has only failed to podium twice. The lowest finish he has had here was sixth in this year's 24 Hour after having run in the top-three of his class.
Shane Lewis got a last minute call to race in Saturday's Nürburgring 6 Hours with HRT Aston Martin. Image courtesy of John Dagys.
Lewis found much of his success with German Audi specialists Götz Motorsports but will be challenging this weekend with HRT. The German operation, racing the specially built British machine, has found speed since Lewis came to the venture earlier this year. They are still searching for their first victory together but the combination has all the earmarks of success. The 6h ADAC Ruhr-Pokal-Rennen will be their third race together having opened the year with the 24 Hours of Dubai in early January before traveling here to Nürburgring for the 24 Hour in the spring.
The Nürburgring track is blindingly quick and, with 73-turns, the Nordschleife - translated to English as the "North Swipe" - takes hundreds