Remembering Sabine Schmitz: Queen of the Nurburgring

By Craig Ranson
By Craig Ranson

Managing Director – Bridge Classic Cars

German racing star Sabine Schmitz has passed away aged 51 after a long battle with cancer. Schmitz was best known for her trailblazing career in motorsports and gained the nickname of the Queen of the Nurburgring. In more recent year shes worked on Top Gear and first appeared on the BBC show in 2004.

Following her withdrawal from a race, she said in a statement issued last July:

“Dear friends of professional motor sport.

“Many of you have probably wondered why I was on the list of participants on our Porsche in the NSL and then didn’t drive after all.

“I would like to provide enlightenment here, I think I owe it to my/our fans! Since the end of 2017, I have been fighting an extremely persistent cancer that has not been eliminated with the resources so far.

“It got a little better – but now it’s come back with full force.

“Now I have to draw all the strength and nerve to master the next powerful therapies … hoping something [good] will happen.

“So I say goodbye ‘probably’ for the first time this season. In addition, I would like to thank everyone for their help and support in my everyday life, and encouragement in writing!”

One of Schmitz’s legacies was becoming one of the two BMW M5 “ring taxi” drivers around the Nürburgring; where its estimated that she had completed more than 20,000 laps of the ring over the course of her career.

Her familiarity with the track allowed her to drive faster than other drivers, bringing a certain thrill ride for the daring fans in the passenger’s seat.

Credit: Alamy Stock Image

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