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Music video celebrates the ‘Ring

Walter Röhrl co-stars with YouTuber Misha Charoudin in video that promotes safety and charity


Multiple world rally champion Walter Röhrl, famed Porsche Team boss Olaf Manthey, and YouTuber Misha Charoudin have joined rock band the Heizer Monkeys for their newest music video, TF Song (The Pineapple King) with proceeds from the performance benefiting EiFelkind, a racing drivers’ charity that supports local children with limited abilities and also is providing for refugees from the Ukraine.

The setting for the music video is the famed Nürburgring Nordschleife, aka the Green Hell for racing drivers but a favorite location for automakers proving the capability of their highest-performance sports cars.

As described in the news release about the video, “The European motorsports season begins. It’s March 2022. The world of Motorsport is well and truly opening after the ravages of the global pandemic. Olaf Manthey has become a race marshal, Misha Charoudin’s long dormant alter ego Boosted Boris has returned from obscurity as a shamanic warrior guide, and Walter Röhrl waits in the snowy mountains to train ‘The Chosen One’ to be a better driver. All of this can only mean one thing – the public days or ‘TF’ season at the Ring has started.

“The TF Song is rock track and a satire on boy racers and overeager young visitors to the Ring, or any race track. Beginners in motorsport can feel fear. This fear turns to adrenaline, and gives rise to bravado, and sadly often results in sticky consequences. The message is clear: Respect the Ring. 

The Pineapple King is a reference to the German phrase Goldene Ananas or Golden Pineapple, perhaps the equivalent of the ‘wooden spoon’ in English. It’s a non-existent prize for people who treat public ‘Ring sessions as a race. You can’t win a prize on public days, except perhaps the metaphorical and far from desirable Pineapple.

Checking the video at the shoot

“The video tells the story of a young would-be ‘Ring warrior who comes to the track with the wrong idea of winning. He is spotted by YouTuber Misha Charoudin’s alter ego Boosted Boris, who decides he is in fact ‘The Chosen One.’ Then, with the help of Röhrl and Manthey, he finds himself retrained, renewed and ready to return to the Ring for a victory of a very different kind.”

The script for the video borrows from the Karate Kid and features cameos by journalist Dale Lomas, former Lamborghini works driver Stefan Rosina, and by several cars well-known to those who drive the ‘Ring.

The Heizer Monkeys not only are musicians, but also a racing team. Drummer Leo Willert is the reigning Porsche Challenge Middle East champion. Lead singer and song writer Joey Kotrie has raced a 911 GT3 Cup car in the Le Mans Classic and has a BMW M3 CSL track car. The group’s organist is Christian Eigner, who also is the drummer for Depeche Mode.

“I think most of us develop into more mature characters over time, but as far as track driving was concerned, I was starting a bit from behind,” song writer Kotrie is quoted. “When I first came 12 years ago, I loved the ‘Ring from the first stroll around the car park during a TF day, but I really had no clue. More specifically, I had no clue about what I didn’t know, and that of course can be dangerous.

Misha Charoudin
Walter Röhrl (left) and Olaf Manthey

“The ‘Ring is such a magical place, the people are so warm, and on a busy Saturday during TF there can sometimes be almost a carnival vibe. But driving fast can be dangerous. If people have serious crashes on the ring or even worse on the local roads, there’s a risk of bad consequences, not just for the people in the cars, but for TF itself. TF is allowed to happen only because people respect the danger. 

“I hope the TF Song is enjoyed, but also that it helps people think about how privileged we are to visit this place. The truth is that our attitudes when we visit here can actually influence whether it survives in the future.”

Larry Edsall
Larry Edsall
A former daily newspaper sports editor, Larry Edsall spent a dozen years as an editor at AutoWeek magazine before making the transition to writing for the web and becoming the author of more than 15 automotive books. In addition to being founding editor at ClassicCars.com, Larry has written for The New York Times and The Detroit News and was an adjunct honors professor at the Walter Cronkite School of Journalism and Mass Communication at Arizona State University.


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