If you’re planning a trip to the Nürburgring, don’t go until you’ve tested your mettle at Cadwell Park.
That’s the advice I’d have to give to anyone who’s yet to sample the famous Nordschleife.
Why Cadwell? Well, because Lincolnshire’s 83-year-old circuit mixes undulations, cambers and even a jump, aka The Mountain, into its 2.19-mile long course, making it a perfect venue to gauge whether both you and your vehicle are up to the task of tackling what is ultimately the world’s most daunting circuit.
Cadwell’s daunting, too, of course, with good old-fashioned grass runoffs - instead of Tarmac - trees that dump wet leaves onto the bottom part of the circuit, just to make things tricky and unpredictable, and a first sector that, according to seemingly fearless professionals, can be taken completely flat-out.
Get into a groove at Cadwell and you’ll realise that few other circuits are as rewarding to master. I say this having recently sampled it for the first time, albeit in a racing pick-up truck (you can read about that in Autocar soon), where I discovered my favourite corner complex in Britain: Hall Bends.
This section, towards the end of the lap (and at 1min 27sec in the video above), is made up of a right, left, right trio that, in properly sorted machinery, can be taken with a dab or two of the brakes and a chased throttle. It’s so satisfying to blend the flicks of these bends together, especially in a car that can be danced between their apexes.
Having digested just how much of a rollercoaster ride the circuit is, I’m now itching to go back in another car. My own Renault Clio Renaultsport 182 would probably thrive on the circuit’s flowing layout, although I did say I wouldn’t take that 122,000-mile-old car on track anymore...
One thing’s for certain, I’ll be back at Cadwell in something soon. If you’ve not been, I’d highly recommend it, if not only just to ensure you don’t venture down to Germany next year in a state not ready for the Nürburgring.