Date of Birth : April 19 1940
Biography Kurt Ahrens
Kurt Karl-Heinrich Ahrens, also known as Kurt Ahrens, Jr., was born in 1940 in Brunswick. Kurt Ahrens Jr. inherited the race virus from his father. Kurt Ahrens Sr. was a racer during the weekends, and ran a recycling company for a living. The business seemed to run well, as Kurt Ahrens Sr. Was the first customer who took delivery of a Porsche 550 Spyder (chassis 550-018) January 15 1955. That was the first connection for Kurt Ahrens Jr. with Porsche, and a connection that continues even today.
Kurt Ahrens Jr. showed interest in the race career of his father, who raced in Formula 3 and Formula Jr. In 1958 Kurt Jr followed his father into the category. They raced each other for five years. The talent of Kurt Jr could not be hidden, and he outperformed his father in most races. Kurt Ahrens Jr. won the German Formula Junior championship 3 times (1961,1963,1965). Kurt Ahrens Sr retired from racing and Kurt jr stepped up in the Formula 2.
One of the most emotional moments in Kurt Ahrens’ career was the death of Jim Clark at the Hockenheimring. The night before Clarck’s fatal accident, Ahrens and Clark spent together in a TV studio for an interview and they shared a car back to their hotel. Kurt Ahrens was a succesful racer in Formula 2 and the next step up was Formula 2. Jack Brabham offered him a seat in the 1968 German GP at the Nürburgring. That would immediately be Kurt Ahren’s only F1 race. Kurt Ahrens Jr. noticed the sacrifices to be done to have an active F1 career. And for him, racing was above all there to provide a counterpoint to his everyday work in the family business. That made him decide against a F1 career.
In 1967, Huschke von Hanstein asked Kurt Ahrens to drive a Porsche. And there was no way Ahrens could refuse this offer. His first outing in a Porsche was at the 1000KM Nurburgring. Ahrens Jr. teamed up with Rolf Stommelen in a Porsche 910/8 (chassis 910-027). Due to engine troubles, they had to quit the race. In 1968, Kurt shared the wheel of a Porsche 908 at the 500km Zeltweg with Hans Herrmann. They climbed the 2nd step of the podium.
In 1969 Kurt Ahrens joined the Porsche works team. First race in 1969 was the Daytona 24H , Ahrens and Stommelen shared a Porsche 908 but they didn’t make it to the finish. Just a few weekends later, Joe Buzzetta joined the duo at the Sebring 12H. This time they had more succes and finished 3rd. His most successful race in 1969 was the 1000Km Zeltweg. Ahrens teamed up with Jo Siffert in a Porsche 917. This combination resulted in the first outright victory for a Porsche 917.
Kurt Ahrens crashes at Ehra-Lessien
In his 2nd year as a Porsche works team member, Kurt Ahrens won the 1000km Nürburgring in a Porsche 908. He shared the car with Vic Elford. Earlier that year, April 6th, Kurt Ahrens was one of the drivers involved in test rides with the Porsche 917 at the Volkswagen testrack in Ehra-Lessien in Germany. At a speed of 250kmh, the car started shaking and became complete unmanageable due to aquaplaning. Ahrens crashed in the barrier, and the long tail Porsche 917 disintegrated. The car went under the Armco barrier at the other side of the road with Kurt Ahrens still strapped in the seat. Deeply impressed, he he climbed out of the car. This accident did not prevent Ahrens to get back in a race car. He completed the race season. In 1971 however Ahrens decided to quit racing.
It is remarkable that Kurt Ahrens participated in over 300 races, and never crashed a car during a race. Today, Ahrens still accompanies the Porsche Museum to its driving events at renowned classic car meets all over the world as well as various historical motorsport events. Last year he was a guest at the Solitude Revival.
Kurt Ahrens Jr. Race results with Porsche
|28.5.1967||1000 km Nürburgring||9||Porsche 910||Stommelen / Ahrens, Jr.||Porsche System Engineering||DNF|
|30.7.1967||6 h Brands Hatch||12||Porsche 907||In entry list only||Porsche System Engineering Ltd.||4th|
|25.8.1968||500 km Zeltweg||3||Porsche 908||Herrmann / Ahrens, Jr.||Porsche System Engineering Ltd.||2nd|
|25.8.1968||500 km Zeltweg||4||Porsche 908||In entry list only||Porsche System Engineering Ltd.||DNF|
|2.2.1969||24 h Daytona||54||Porsche 908||Stommelen / Ahrens, Jr.||Porsche System Engineering||DNF|
|22.3.1969||12 h Sebring||27||Porsche 908/02||Stommelen / Buzzetta / Ahrens, Jr.||Porsche System Engineering Ltd.||3rd|
|22.3.1969||12 h Sebring||28||Porsche 908/02||Herrmann / Ahrens, Jr. / Stommelen||Porsche System Engineering Ltd.||DNF|
|30.3.1969||Le Mans Test||25||Porsche 908||Herrmann / Ahrens, Jr.||Porsche System Engineering||4th|
|25.4.1969||1000 km Monza||7||Porsche 908||Herrmann / Ahrens, Jr.||Porsche System Engineering||2nd|
|11.5.1969||1000 km Spa||10||Porsche 908||Elford / Ahrens, Jr.||Porsche System Engineering||3rd|
|1.6.1969||1000 km Nürburgring||3||Porsche 908/02||Elford / Ahrens, Jr.||Porsche System Engineering Ltd.||T-car|
|1.6.1969||1000 km Nürburgring||3T||Porsche 908/02||Elford / Ahrens, Jr.||Porsche System Engineering Ltd.||3rd|
|15.6.1969||24 h Le Mans||10||Porsche 917||Woolfe / Linge / *Ahrens, Jr.||John Woolfe Racing||DNF|
|15.6.1969||24 h Le Mans||14||Porsche 917||Stommelen / Ahrens, Jr.||Porsche System Engineering||DNF|
|15.6.1969||24 h Le Mans||45||Porsche 910||Stommelen / Ahrens, Jr.||Porsche System Engineering||DNA|
|15.6.1969||24 h Le Mans||64||Porsche 908||In entry list only||Porsche System Engineering||2nd|
|10.8.1969||1000 km Zeltweg||29||Porsche 917||Siffert / Ahrens, Jr.||Karl Freiherr v. Wendt||1st|
|17.8.1969||Wunstorf [SP]||58||Porsche 908/02||Kurt Ahrens, Jr.||Porsche-Konstruktionen KG Salzburg||1st|
|14.9.1969||500 km Imola||7||Porsche 908/02||Ahrens, Jr. / Lins||Porsche Salzburg||11th|
|21.9.1969||Preis von Salzburg||32||Porsche 908/02||Kurt Ahrens, Jr.||Porsche KG||1st|
|5.10.1969||Preis von Tirol [SP]||27||Porsche 908/02||Kurt Ahrens, Jr.||Porsche KG||4th|
|12.10.1969||Salzburgring [SRP]||20||Porsche 908/02||Kurt Ahrens, Jr.||1st|
|1.2.1970||24 h Daytona||3||Porsche 917||Ahrens, Jr. / Elford||Porsche Konstruktionen KG||DNF|
|21.3.1970||12 h Sebring||16||Porsche 917||Elford / Ahrens, Jr.||Porsche Audi||DNF|
|21.3.1970||12 h Sebring||17||Porsche 917||In entry list only||Porsche Audi||DNF|
|12.4.1970||1000 km Brands Hatch||11||Porsche 917||In entry list only||Porsche Konstruktionen KG. Salzburg||2nd|
|25.4.1970||1000 km Monza||10||Porsche 917||Elford / Ahrens, Jr.||Porsche Konstrukzion Salzburg||DNF|
|3.5.1970||Targa Florio||20||Porsche 908/03||In entry list only||Porsche KG||DNF|
|17.5.1970||1000 km Spa||28||Porsche 917||Elford / Ahrens, Jr.||Porsche Salzburg||3rd|
|31.5.1970||1000 km Nürburgring||22||Porsche 908/03||Elford / Ahrens, Jr.||Porsche Konstruktionen Salzburg||1st|
|31.5.1970||1000 km Nürburgring||52||Porsche 917||Ahrens, Jr. / Elford||Porsche Konstruktionen Salzburg||DNA|
|14.6.1970||24 h Le Mans||23||Porsche 917||Attwood / Herrmann / *Ahrens, Jr.||Porsche Konstruktionen K.G.||1st|
|14.6.1970||24 h Le Mans||25||Porsche 917||Elford / Ahrens, Jr.||Porsche Konstruktionen K.G.||DNF|
|11.7.1970||6 h Watkins Glen||31||Porsche 917||Elford / Hulme / *Ahrens, Jr.||Porsche Audi Division||4th|
|11.7.1970||6 h Watkins Glen||32||Porsche 917||Attwood / Ahrens, Jr.||Porsche Audi Division||6th|
|12.7.1970||Can-Am Watkins Glen||32||Porsche 917||In entry list only||Porsche Audi Division||3rd|
|16.8.1970||Wunstorf [SRP]||13||Porsche 908/02||Kurt Ahrens, Jr.||Kurt Ahrens||5th|
|13.9.1970||500 km Imola||33||Porsche 908/02||Ahrens, Jr. / Marko||Martini Racing Team||3rd|
|20.9.1970||Interserie Thruxton||5||Porsche 908/02||In entry list only||International Martini Racing||3rd|
|11.10.1970||1000 km Zeltweg||20||Porsche 917||Ahrens, Jr. / Marko||Porsche KG Salzburg||DNF|
|11.10.1970||1000 km Zeltweg||T||Porsche 917||Elford / Attwood / Ahrens, Jr. / Marko||Porsche KG Salzburg||T-car|
|18.10.1970||1000 km Paris||15||Porsche 908/02||In entry list only||17th|
|7.11.1970||9 h Kyalami||2||Porsche 917||Siffert / Ahrens, Jr.||Martini International||2nd|
|4.4.1971||1000 km Brands Hatch||9||Porsche 917||In entry list only||Martini Rossi Racing Team||9th|
Race results courtesy of Racing Sports Cars
Pictures Carlos Ghys and Porsche AG