An interview with a sixties Lotus manager and a race car driver from that era, a Classic Team Lotus Tour, a meeting with the East Anglia Lotus Drivers Club chapter, an overnight stay in one of my favorite pubs and maybe, just maybe my Elise might be the means of transport. All this packed in one epic day. What’s not to like!
Recently a post about the Lotus 3/7 was added to this website. That story is mainly about British race car driver Tim Goss and the success he had with the little race car. But Tim was not the first owner of the 3/7. With one car built Colin Chapman decided to abort the 3/7 project – the sports car was too expensive for the Clubmans Formule it was built for. It was Lotus home sales manager (and personal friend of Colin Chapman) John Berry who traded in his commission for the one-off race car and started racing with it. So it’s a great honour to meet both John and Tim for lunch in The Bird in Hand on Saturday 18th January, just a few miles from where the Lotus factory has been since 1966.
Before lunch, some other great stuff is waiting for me. Since Hethel is nearby, a visit to the workshops of one of the greatest Formula One teams ever is planned: Lotus. Classic Team Lotus is the Works historic motor sport activity in the Lotus group of companies. The Team Lotus mechanics that supported Champions such as Ayrton Senna, Nigel Mansell, Mario Andretti, Emerson Fittipaldi, Graham Hill and Jim Clark continue to care for the World Championship winning Lotus F1 cars that won 77 Grand Prix. Tours can be booked here; don’t wait too long for the tours tend to be fully booked swiftly.
But even before that visit, a great meeting will take place. The East Anglia chapter of Lotus Drivers Club breakfast meeting takes place every third Saturday of the month from 09:00 am in the Sugarbeat Eating House in Swainsthorpe (near Norwich). And lucky me, next Saturday is this months 3rd Saturday! So I’m looking forward to meet David Wenman and all these bootifull people and their cars (although a lot of them might be in hibernation).
Hibernation is where my Elise is at but since the weather forecast is not so bad for next weekend, I might just wake her op for this short but epic trip to her motherland. Keep on the look out for next posts!