Whether you’re a pro driver or a first-time HPDE participant, wrecking is an occupational hazard, both off – and especially on – the racetrack. One Chevrolet C7 Corvette Z06 driver learned that firsthand recently at the Nürburgring Nordschleife, and while no humans appear to have been physically harmed in the accident, we certainly feel for the car and its owner.
The Nordschleife is, of course, perhaps the most notoriously challenging road course in existence; there’s a reason that the great Sir Jackie Stewart gave it the nickname “Green Hell”. The video above from Auto Addiction picks up just as the red-and-silver Corvette Z06 enters a right-hand corner. The driver makes it through that turn without incident, but as he exits and speeds uphill to set up for the next turn, the rear wheels break traction and throw the car to the right. The brake lights come on, the driver trying desperately to halt the car, but there’s not enough distance to stop and he hits the wall head-on.
The metal barrier deflects upon being hit, as pieces of the car go skidding across the track. As the dust settles, a cloud of steam can be seen wafting up from the engine bay, and we see that the entire nose has been more-or-less destroyed.
Based on the footage, we have to agree with Motor1‘s analysis; it seems very likely that the Electronic Stability Control system was deactivated at the time of the crash. You’ll hear no judgment from us, but for what it’s worth, we recommend always, always leaving ESC on in any sort of high-performance driving situation where there is a real risk of crashing. Even a skilled driver can, on occasion, lose control of a 250-horsepower vehicle, let alone a 650-horsepower sledgehammer like the C7 Corvette Z06.
Be sure to check out the Nordschleife crash for yourself in the video above.