Las Vegas is known for reproducing the world’s most exotic and well known travel destinations in a glitzy, hooker dwelling, slot-machine-ridden package surrounded by miles of desert and rock. They’ve pulled a “Honey I Shrunk The Kids” on the entire city of New York, recreated the canals of Venice on a the second story of a shopping mall, and even turned Paris, France into a casino complete with buffet and strip club. Now, Vegas is setting its sights on the motorsports world and aiming to recreate the world’s most famous racetrack: the Nürburgring.
This isn’t a joke. A guy named Bruton Smith is hoping to make a completely accurate replica of the Nürburgring a scant ten miles outside of Las Vegas. The track would mimic the entire length of the Germany based track foot for foot and turn for turn, although almost certainly not the extreme elevation loss and gain. The lush green forests and temperate landscape surrounding the Nürburgring also won’t be reproduced for obvious reasons, but the track would retain the idea that anyone could go and drive their car around it as its main purpose wouldn’t be to host motorsports events.
It’s an intriguing idea and we know that everyone right now is asking if this is going to really happen or not. And the answer is yes, it very well could. Let’s go back to Bruton Smith for a moment. Who is he and why does he want to build the Green Hell in Satan’s Anus (I really hope that is a real nickname for Vegas…)? Have you heard of Infineon Raceway? How about Bristol Motor Speedway? Or Texas Speedway or Las Vegas Speedway? Smith is the CEO of Speedway Motorsports, the company that owns each and every one of those tracks. The man is a veteran in building and maintaining world class racing venues and the one man that could actually turn this outrageous idea into a reality.
So, is a Las Vegas based Nürburgring really going to happen? The odds are looking pretty good, which is generally a rare thing for Vegas. Even Smith has admitted that he’s already been in talks with the Nevada Bureau of Land Management, Nevada’s Governor, and some Germans chaps who are likely familiar with the Green Hell.
Plus if you factor in the fact that Vegas’ entire existence is based on recreation and that there’s no German themed resort in the city, there’s a chance that lapping the Nürburgring won’t soon require a trip to Germany…
For the moment though, we still think Vegas is best for this.
(And for all the folks out there who are going to argue “why can’t they be original and build a new track”, you can complain and bitch about it as much as you want but the next time you’re in Vegas we know there’s no way you’ll be able to say no to driving around the Ring, original or not.)