Just a quick report as I'm knackered, but I just got back from my first weekend trip to the Nurburgring and have to say it's absolutely fantastic and more than a little bit scary! Great place to find out more about your car's handling on the edge though.
As was to be expected, several things dropped off my 14-year-old Spider across the journey there and the 8 laps I got in on Saturday, including the passenger-side visor mirror, a 7.5 amp fuse of unknown origin, and part of the centre console footwell wall.
However, more worrying, I've discovered that the rear-wheel steering travel is too great on my right-hand side (the same side as the 'dumbbell' weight, if it's relevant) - under maximum left-hand cornering the wheel backs into the rear of the wheel arch lining, causing a lot of banging. I didn't know what was causing it but after 6 laps it had become very bad, and I found melted wheel-arch plastic sprayed all over the inside of the arch. The ridge near the outside edge of the rear bumper was filed down to the metal bracket underneath, which was biting the tyre. I bent the sharp edge out the way but it didn't help a lot - I couldn't have risked a second day there.
I've had the rear polyflexed so I'm pretty sure my bushes are good - does anyone know how the rear-steer mechanism travel is 'limited' (e.g. bumpstops or something) or what could be causing it?
I recently had the anti-roll link replaced on that side, and although it seems fine and was secure the indie had trouble sourcing the part from the network and ended up using a link from another Alfa model (156 or 166 I think) that they'd determined was identical. I'll measure it up next weekend to see if I can determine if that's correct.
That aside though, get yourselves out there - it's an ultimate driving experience whether you do it in your own car or hire one (there were several hired new Swifts and Scirocco's doing well out there). Don't forget the breakdown cover!!