From the archives: Norisring 1949

Written by Kurt | Wednesday, 20 April 2011 00:00
Norisring1949-3The Norisring is the well-known street racing track in the German town of Nürnberg. It is possibly the track with the most illustrous history in the world as it uses the former nazi parade ground to race on. Just after the war the allies, and in particular the americans, granted the German citizens some more freedom by allowing them to, initially, organise motor bike races on the grounds. Obviously to give them some much needed entertainment to keep the people happy and prevent them from doing silly things (again). The Americans made sure there was enough petrol and provided security for the onlookers, some 60.000 of them in the first few years. In 1947 the first race was held, 1948 for the first time featured cars. 1949 was the year when both formula 2 and sports cars raced in the same race. There was the F2 AFM-BMW driven by Alexander von Falkenhausen, the F2 Polensky-BMW driven by Helmut Polensky and numerous Veritas RS sports cars came up trumps.


Photos of the event are of course rare but we can now reveal some, made by an unknown spectator all those years ago and found by us on an antiques fair. In the first photo we see nobleman Alexander von Falkenhausen doing his lap of honour with the victory wreath around his neck. In front of his car is the definite sign that the war has not gone away completely yet; there is an american MP officer (and another one in the background) guiding him over the track. The stone grandstands in the back are the remains of the enormous nazi complex that funnily laid the foundation for the race track.

The two photos underneath actually show two scenes from the race. In the first one we see Helmut Polensky driving his (home-made?) Polensky Monopol BMW powered monoposto with nr. 100 in front, steering his way through to 4th place in the event. The car behind him is one of the many Veritas RS that were entered, most probably driven by a certain Gerd-Heinz Jäger. In the bottom picture we see von Falkenhausen again, this time going at speed through the corner, on his way to win the event.