SEVEN OF THE BEST!
Historic Lotuses steal the show at Britain’s big indoor celebration of motor racing
Classic Team Lotus wowed the crowds by bringing together all seven remaining Lotus Type 49s in one place at the Autosport International show.
The event, which took place at the Birmingham NEC, was billed as being the only chance to see these former steeds of Graham Hill, Jim Clark, Jackie Oliver, Jochen Rindt, Emerson Fittipaldi, Richard Attwood and Jochen Rindt together. Our favourite was Jim Clark’s R2/11, which he used for eight Grands Prix, taking wins at Silverstone, Watkins Glen and Monza in 1967. Clark later won the 1968 Tasman Championship in the car, before it was loaned to Rob Walker for Jo Siffert to race after R4 was destroyed. It was later updated to B-spec for Jackie Oliver, before being sold to Pete Lovely, who did six GPs in it as a privateer.
Elsewhere it was another Cosworthpowered competition car that grabbed attention, though in a very different medium. Ten Ford Sierra RS500 Cosworths dominated the adjacent Performance Car Show, each with fascinating histories. One car, built by former British Touring Car Champion Andy Rouse, dominated the 1988 season, taking nine victories and 10 pole positions. It then travelled to Australia for the 1989 Australian Touring Car Championship, where it was driven by Peter Brock. Another Sierra built by Andy Rouse had F1 connections – a 1988 car built for Guy Edwards was occasionally used by Damon Hill in 1989.
For those who love motorsport-bred engineering, the technology hall had plenty of cutting-edge technology to drool over. While we’d have like to have seen more classic motorsport content, it was a good way to kick off the indoor show season.
Walter Röhrl used this 600bhp Audi Quattro S1 as a test car for the 1985 World Rally Championship season. Kent Cams put this beautiful Lotus Cortina on its stand. It’s driven by Mark Jones in the U2TC series, for pre-1966 under 2.0-litre touring cars.