Today marks the 66th birthday of Walter Röhrl, rally driver extraordinaire and present-day Porsche test driver. Born on this day in 1947, Röhrl grew up as a ski instructor and chauffeur, but at age 21 he tried his first rally. The rest is history: Röhrl became one of history's most storied and accomplished rally drivers, immortalized on YouTube for his fancy footwork and daring driving.
Röhrl first entered the 1968 Bavaria Rally with a friend in a Fiat 850 Coupé, and returned the next year in a BMW 2002 ti. In 1971 he enjoyed an apprenticeship with Ford, and subsequently bounced between several teams for the next two decades. Röhrl had great success with a Fiat 131 Abarth: highlights included winning the Monte Carlo Rally, Rally Portugal, Rally Argentina, and Rally San Remo in 1980. In 1984, Röhrl switched to Audi and drove the Quattro S1 and subsequently the Quattro 200.
Röhrl has also competed in various circuit races, including at the Nürburgring, Lime Rock Park, and Germany's DTM race series.
Since 1992, Röhrl has served as one of Porsche's in-house test drivers and a company representative. We've previously seen him get to grips with the wild 918 Spyder supercar, drive the Targa Tasmania rally in a classic 911SC, and hustle the gorgeous 904 GTS around a track. He was also said to be "instrumental" in the development of the Carrera GT and other recent sports cars.
But the best way to celebrate the 66th birthday of talented driver Walter Röhrl is to admire his work on video. Below are a few clips of his performances behind the wheel.
Audi Quattro S1 Rally Car
2009 Porsche 911 GT3
Audi S1 At 1986 Rally Monte Carlo
On The Porsche 911 GT3 And Turbo
Audi Quattro A2 In 2010
Sources: Porsche, roehrl-walter.de