New Zealand Classic Car - - Feature -

he story of our fea­tured Lo­tus 22 — frame-num­ber 22/47 — is both in­ter­est­ing and tan­gled. While some parts of the tale have be­come a lit­tle misty over time, much of the car’s his­tory has been dis­in­terred by those with a far wider breadth of knowl­edge than I.

The 22’s ini­tial own­er­ship se­quence was pro­vided by the late David Mckin­ney, a Kiwi who resided in the UK and an in­ter­na­tion­ally ac­claimed mo­tor sport his­to­rian. De­spite David’s renowned re­search abil­i­ties, when it came to this par­tic­u­lar Lo­tus 22, it would ap­pear that he made the in­cor­rect as­sump­tion that its frame num­ber and chas­sis-plate num­ber would be the same — we now know that is not nec­es­sar­ily the case. In­deed, fur­ther re­search as re­ported to us by Mo­tor­sport Flashback guru Michael Clark — who en­joyed reg­u­lar com­mu­ni­ca­tions with David — have con­firmed that the Lo­tus 22 car­ry­ing chas­sis­plate 47 was orig­i­nally pur­chased by a French­man named Jean Lu­cien­bon­net, who was killed in a For­mula Ju­nior race in Italy dur­ing Au­gust 1962.

com­ing at the ’64 Tere­tonga In­ter­na­tional. At the end of the sea­son, the Lo­tus was sold to Len South­ward, who en­tered the car for Kerry Grant. Later own­ers in­cluded Auck­land Star jour­nal­ist John Wil­son, who had it pre­pared by Stu­art Lis­ter at his An­gle­sea Street, Hamil­ton garage. Re­put­edly, the Lo­tus was pressed into com­plet­ing many mid­night test runs around the back streets of Hamil­ton. Later, Mo­tor­drome Rac­ing Team mem­ber Brian Innes leased the Lo­tus for a one-off sin­gle-seater race at Pukekohe, at which he crashed. The in­juries he suf­fered in that in­ci­dent re­sulted in what Innes would usu­ally re­fer to as his “Lo­tus limp”.

The Lo­tus’ rac­ing ca­reer ap­peared to be very much over by the early ’ 70s, and the car was ac­quired by Kerry Rout. For Rout, the 22 was very much a re­tire­ment project, and his own­er­ship of it was well-known to Roly Le­vis. In­deed, in later years — hav­ing seen the Cooper T52 he’d raced prior to the Lo­tus do­ing so well in his­toric rac­ing — Roly would gen­tly ap­ply pres­sure to Kerry when­ever they bumped into one an­other, in ef­fect ask­ing when Kerry was go­ing to get Roly’s old Lo­tus run­ning.

Enter Noel Wood­ford

Mark Roberts of Mcgre­gor Mo­tor­sport in Christchurch had been aware of the ex– Roly Le­vis Lo­tus 22 from early in 2011. Mark had also been in con­tact with Kerry Rout, the car’s cur­rent owner,

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