Day 19. Route

Not a lot to do today until the 'Ring was due to open at 6pm or thereabouts. I slept in and missed breakfast. Oh well. As we had time on our hands everybody seemed to find an errand to go on. Ian went off in search of brake pads, which prompted me to look at mine. The rears were down to the backing, despite being almost new before the trip. 4000 miles or so out of a set, not brilliant. The HH fronts still had plenty of meat on them though. I asked Ian to get some pads for me while he was in the pad shop, but when he took a while coming back borrowed some off of marvin, then gave marvin the German ones when Ian finally got back. His own pads had been hard to find. I changed the pads and refilled the Scottoiler with some chainsaw oil I had bought in Austria. I couldn't be bothered to repack the oil, but was wondering what to do with it. A little later while walking into the village I noticed some gardeners mowing verges etc., and on the back of their tractor was a chainsaw, so I left the oil next to that. They probably now believe in the chainsaw-oil fairy.
While everybody was out shopping I decided to go look at the Schloss which overlooks the village of Nurburg. I went for a walk round the outside first, which proved to be a bit of a challenge. Obviously I wasn't the first to do so, as others had arranged pits of scruffy string and net and other random stuff on the more precipitous bits. My suspicion that it wasn't an official path was confirmed when I had to climb a 10 foot wall to get back to the castle entrance. On paying my DM4.50 entrance I looked around. The castle has a number of round towers, which had been slated in a spiral. I noticed later that all German slated roofs were lapped horizontally with a slight slope to the courses (rather than lapped vertically as in the UK). I wonder which is better?
The Schloss has certainly seen better days, but the main keep still stands, and has a staircase (new) inside to the upper chamber which still has some plaster and a fairly ornate vaulted roof. On the top of the tower the view of Nurburg and the surrounding countryside is excellent. I tried for ages to spot the 'ring, but as I had not yet been on it I had no idea where it went, where the village was in relation to it or anything, so couldn't pick it out.
We all got back to the hotel in time for the ring to open, except for Jim who had fallen foul of the normal bike dealers' refusal to take your word for the nature of the fault and buy the parts in in advance. He had got to Damstadt to find no radiator; it was hoped that it would arrive the next day. Marvin had bought a new set of riding kit and a lid. He was most enthusiastic about the 'suit which rain just bounces off'. I was rather hoping it wouldn't get put to the test. Mike had finally tracked down a replacement mirror for the TRX, and also had some oil for an oil change.
The 'Ring was open by this stage and I went out for two laps. My initial impression was that it is huge, and would take a lifetime to learn. At one point on my second lap I braked for a corner and heard a squeal of tyres behind me as a BMW locked its tyres trying not to drive into the back of me. As it went past I saw that it was the German racing driver who does the BMW 'Ring Taxi' with a car full of paying passengers. She gave me a really filthy look as she went past. A bit unfair I thought, she does 20 laps a day for 6 months of the year. I had done one and a bit laps, perhaps she might anticipate others lnowing the course less well than herself?
I was trying to ration laps, a 6 lap ticket is 120DM, or 42 quid in the money that means something to me. When the track closed we returned to the hotel and as we were relaxing on the balcony the Curtins arrived. They directed us to a more happening bar for the evening where we ate, drank, and ogled barmaids. (and possibly Amanda too)

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