'Green Hell' turns 80

June 19, 2007 at 1:51 AM

NURBURG, Germany, June 19 (UPI) -- The Nurburgring, the legendary German racetrack dubbed "the Green Hell" by driver Jackie Stewart, has hosted the world's fastest cars for 80 years now.

The track, where such noted drivers as Michael Schumacher honed their skills, marked its 80th birthday Monday, Deutsche Welle reported.

Rudolf Caracciola won the inaugural race on June 18, 1927, navigating the 17.6-mile, technically challenging track at the then-breathtaking speed of 62.2 miles per hour in his Mercedes S.

The Ring, as it's commonly known, took up to 3,000 workers two years to build. It survived bombings during World War II.

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