A bit of history
The Bilster Berg - or Bilster Berg Driving Resort - first opened its gate in 2013. The track is nestled in hills the "Teutoburg Forest" in central Germany close to the city of Paderborn.
Designed by world-famous architect Hermann Tilke (who also planned several modern Formula 1 circuits) who was supported by rally-legend Walter Röhrl, Bilster Berg is arguably one of Germany's most exciting race tracks.
While Bilster Berg is not holding any official races as of now, the track is hosting events including Track Days, automotive tests and often features in performance car reviews. It's secluded and secure location on top of a little hill make it the perfect spots for development tests as well as television shoots.
But lets quickly jump to where it all began. Legend has it (or not even sure whether it's a legend) that the idea for the Bilster Berg Driving Resort came when two friends, when Baron von der Borch and Count von Oeynhausen-Sierstorpff took a bike around the former NATO military site on top of Bilster Berg. After Baron von Borch bought back the sight from the British Army in the 90s it lie idle for years and was ready for a revamp. The idea to build a racetrack was born.
To get the most out of it, the two visited famous architect Hermann Tilke. After initial hesitation and doubt that the local constituency will grant a building permit for a new race track (the first in western Germany since 80 years), a site-visted convinced him to join the project. Shortly after, Walter Röhrl joined as well to provide more input on what the track should look like.
It took more than 7 years and almost €35 million to finish the track which in the end was financed by a consortium of almost 200 private - partially international - investors. After a tough approval process, Bilster Berg opened on the 11th April 2013.
What we think about it
Bilster Berg is very special to say the least. Driving the track, it feels like you don't have a second of breathing time. Across it's 4.2km in length, the track boasts 19 corners as well as 44 crests and troughs. To top it all off, one of its most famous corners the "Mausefalle" i.e. "Mousetrap" is, for the lack of a better word and with 26% gradient, a sheer drop.
It's fair to say that Bilster Berg is one of the most challenging race tracks we have on our calendar and takes even experienced drivers quite some time to get right! Together with the hyper modern paddoc and facilities, it's just a very pleasant spot to spend a Track Day!
Due to the regulations and complaints of local residents, Bilster Berg is one of the toughest tracks when it comes to noise regulation. Unlike any other tracks we're on at the moment, it's using what's called a "noise quota". As it's not an easy thing to explain, please refer to "Bilster Berg - A different kind of noise limit" to find out more! As we don't run high number Track Days, we never encountered any problems so far though!
In our mind, it's pretty hard to describe the sensations you feel driving this track so it's definitely best to watch some videos to see what it's like: