The creation of a cellular rescue squadron with skilled personnel is taken into account the foremost life’s work of Herbert Linge (94), a former Porsche racing driver and works supervisor on the Porsche check division in Weissach.
It all began within the 1972 season with the initiative of Herbert Linge and some Porsche colleagues – you do not and don’t need to see racers sitting helplessly in burning automobiles and dying in flames after a crash.
As a primary emergency measure, Linge transformed a Porsche 914/6 from the check division into a quick hearth engine. Under the tailgate is a custom-made Deugra 120-kilo-gallon hearth extinguishing system with an eight-meter hose and a assured 20-meter radius. Also on board had been a hydraulic press, tin cutters, a cable winch, a noticed and different restoration instruments. And after all the radio.
Linge and the legendary Heidelberg accident physician Dr. Eddie Rothenfelder fashioned the primary crew within the sand-colored 914/6 R, which initially ran behind the sector on the opening lap on the huge races at Hockenheim and the Nürburgring.
“The first flip is all the time probably the most harmful,” Linge mentioned from expertise, “it is the place probably the most area is, and fast intervention is particularly essential right here.”
The ex-Porsche driver, GT champion and twelve-time Le Mans participant saved the tempo on the final row of the grid with none issues, and if there was an explosion, he was there seconds later and determined whether or not to cease. or proceed.
If the primary lap ended with out motion, the R-Porsche was parked in the beginning and end with the engine working. The two males, decked out in helmets and overalls, stayed put and had been instantly on the transfer when an emergency name got here in from the observe and a “go” got here from race management.
The ONS (Supreme National Sports Commission), now the DMSB (German Motorsport Association), has given its blessing for the Porsche 914’s particular drivetrain with a big R on the doorways and rear, which has but to be confirmed anyplace. .
It was actually useful that Linge was the driving consultant on the ONS committee and repeatedly referred to as for emergency rescue measures throughout fires and different delicate incidents.
In the then managing director of the ONS, Sigismund von Kahlen, he discovered a trusted defender and ally, who gave the mission each doable help. In addition to the protagonist Linge, the Langenfeld motorsport membership with its president Otto-Paul Rutat and radio reporter Ernst Harmening, in addition to Georg Belloff (father of the unforgettable Stefan Belloff) had been the initiators and co-founders of the useful establishment. .
In the years that adopted, the person with the hearth gun turned the savior of many racing drivers who had been trapped in burning or utterly destroyed automobiles. With solely the Porsche 914/6 on the unofficial mission, the R-Wagen crew usually had to intervene to forestall the worst.
It additionally occurred on the Nürburgring in October 1972, the place the beginning and end areas had been wrecked. At the Indy begin of the Interseries race, Franz Pesch’s McLaren Chevy accelerated, spun, shot to the precise of the sector, hit the Ferrari 512 M of Swiss driver Herbert Müller, and went over the fuel station barrier. Miraculously, regardless of the gas pump failure, there was no explosion. Instead, the Ferrari exploded after a full tank overturned and overturned on the entrance to the pit lane.
The entrance of the strategy to the pits instantly turned an enormous sea of flames. Linge arrived simply in time to do some helpful work with the Halon Cannon within the R-Car. A minute and a half later, the huge hearth across the Ferrari was extinguished, leaving it a steaming wreck. Muller survived with burns on his face.
With the assistance of the German automotive and equipment business, the official implementation of the relay gained momentum. Thus, inside 4 months, a formidable fleet of dozens of squadron automobiles was assembled.
Porsche bureaucratically changed the previous 914/6 with a used 911 for Linge and Doc, the remainder of the so-called “S-Wagen” fleet got here as loans or donations from all types of producers. As a part of the Formula 2 European Championship held at Hockenheim in April 1973 and somewhat later on the Nürburgring, the sports activities authorities formally launched their “ONS Racetrack Safety Team” to the press, organizers and drivers.
A month after the presentation, the emergency occurred once more. At the Nürburgring, the Formula Super Vee 1,000 km race ended the run for the European Cup. On the opening lap, there was a critical mass crash involving half a dozen automobiles on the quick a part of the airfield. The floor of the highway is sort of a ruined subject, the racing automotive has caught hearth.
Here, too, Linge turned an angel of salvation, extinguishing the hearth with a centered halon beam. The driver in query escaped unharmed thanks to emergency intervention, his burns had been primarily attributable to melted materials in his overalls. “It’s a really darkish chapter,” Linge mentioned on the time. “Either the fabric is unhealthy, or the blokes simply have common t-shirts that soften immediately within the hearth and burn extremely properly.”
Today, the DMSB rescue squadron is an expert firm with many staff and ambulances. Currently, the web materials worth of the fleet is estimated at a number of million euros. A racing occasion with out the facility of fast response is unimaginable as we speak.
Generations of racers owe a debt of gratitude to the pioneer Herbert Lynn, who and his males saved many lives. The quiet Swabian is straightforward: “At the time, I used to be simply doing what I had to do. It’s nice to see what occurred.”
Herbert Linge acquired the Federal Cross of Meritorious Service in 1982.