We have covered it time, and time again. The Vipers demise was met with a pure enthusiasm to give the mighty American one last blaze of glory around the Nurburgring. The team had high hopes to give Lamborghini a true run for their money. But in the end, it was not quite enough.
The crowd funded campaign to capture ‘King of the Ring’ honors has officially come to a close, and there is not a crown in sight. We all knew it would be quite the long shot for the mighty V10 to drag itself around the Green Hell in under 6:52, but deep down I think we all hoped it would. It would have made for an amazing swan song, something we could talk about for generations to come. Unfortunately, the campaign came to a screeching halt, and I mean that in a literal sense.
Professional driver Lance Arnold looked to be in top form, setting a good pace with the ACR viper. While he was able to get some good laps in throughout the session it was one, in particular, that would do the Viper in. Directly after one of his hot laps, Arnold suffered a tire failure, sending the ACR into the wall. This single act put an unceremonious stamp on the record attempt.
The only consultation is that the flying lap just before the tire failure was actually quite good. In fact, it is now the ACR’s fastest time around the Nordschleife, sitting at 7:01.3. That makes the ACR the fastest ever manual transmission car, a small reconciliation for what they set out to prove. The most unfortunate part is that the same thing happened to both cars, proving to be a flaw that they would not be able to overcome. Also because this was not a factory supported mission the damage to the cars was too great to ask the world to keep funding it, setting the perfect time to call it quits. When asked why the tires fail Russ Oasis said, “The combination of this powerful car and this track demands too much from any tire that can also be street legal.”
While it’s never fun to see a team fall short of their goal, we have to give the team all the credit for going over there and giving it their best. Oasis had nothing but great things to say about his team, “It’s been an honor to have worked with drivers of this elite level,” he continued. “Luca Stolz, Lance Arnold, Mario and Dominik Farnbacher, we couldn’t have done this without them. Dominik Farnbacher, in particular, was a driving force in the effort. Working as the development driver who provided the feedback for the team to get the ACR’s suspension and aero settings idealized for the demanding 12.9-mile circuit.”
Even in defeat the Viper somehow manages to come off looking like a hero. It wasn’t even supposed to be there. And yet with its old school technology, it managed to come in under 10 seconds behind a car designed solely to go fast around that track. It’s a sad day to say goodbye to the viper, but what a send off it received.