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Classic Team Lotus confirm line-up for Snetterton Festival

Friday, June 17 2011

Classic Team Lotus have confirmed the line-up for their on-track demonstrations at the Lotus Festival at Snetterton next weekend (25/26 June). The company, run by Colin Chapman's son Clive, are custodians of the Lotus marque's racing heritage and provide a service restoring and supporting cars on behalf of their owners.

The Type 25 owned by Nick Fennell has recently been announced, this was one of Chapman's most innovative designs, utilising a monocoque chassis, a design concept that exists to this day in Formula 1. With the chassis structure perfected, the emphasis switched to the emerging art of aerodynamics.

The wedge-shaped Type 58 will also feature, a car that was due to be tested by Jim Clark upon his return from Hockenheim. The car resurfaced later in the year in preparation for the Tasman Cup but was then shelved. However the wedge shape resurfaced in the hugely successful Lotus 72 just over a year later. The Type 58 finally made its race debut at Brands Hatch in 2002 in Formula 2 specification and will be driven at the festival by Don Hands.

The next car needs little introduction as the Type 79 was another Chapman car that shook the world. The 'ground-effect' design, where the underside of the car is shaped like a wing, held the road like no other and whilst it was first introduced the year before, the more refined and reliable 79 dominated the 1978 season in the hands of World Champion Mario Andretti and 'Super-Swede' Ronnie Peterson.

The final car in this selection is the 1990 Type 102. This car is unique in that it is powered by a Lamborghini V12 engine, the only Lotus ever to have run with 12 cylinders. Derek Warwick was joined in the team by Martin Donnelly that year, the latter surviving a huge accident at Jerez, the aftermath of which is featured in the recent Senna biopic.

This particular chassis has been fully restored and the engine was fired up earlier this year, the first time since 1990, and is sure to sound amazing as it heads down the long straights at Snetterton. Donnelly will also be present at the festival, although the car will be driven by owner Andrew Morris.

Tickets for the Lotus Festival at Snetterton are available in advance from £10 for adults, with free entry for children aged 12 and under. For more information call 0843 453 9000 or click the link below.