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Graham Hill's Lotus 49 to sell at Goodwood Festival of Speed

Published 24 February 2014

The Lotus 49B from the collection of the late-John Dawson-Damer, and driven in period by Graham Hill, is being sold at the Goodwood Festival of Speed by Bonhams, on 27 June, the first time the car has appeared at auction. Lotus ’49-R8’ was built in October 1968 and is one of 12 built, and the estimate is £700,000-1,000,000.

Graham Hill drove ‘R8’ – rigged with the high-level strutted downforce wings of the period - to second place at both Christchurch and Invercargill, New Zealand, before finishing fourth at the Australian GP at Brisbane, and sixth at Melbourne. This car was shipped back to Europe in time to be driven by Richard Attwood in the World Championship-qualifying 1969 Monaco Grand Prix, finishing fourth and setting fastest lap.

At Hethel, ‘R8’ was adapted to Type 49B specification and raced again by Graham Hill at the 1969 British Grand Prix, finishing seventh. It was then sold to Swedish privateer Joakim Bonnier ‘R8’ retired from the 1969 German GP due to a fuel leak. For 1970 the car was sold again to Dave Charlton who used it to clinch the first two of his six consecutive South African Formula 1 Championship titles, 1970-75. Lotus 49 ‘R8’ won nine qualifying rounds in Dave Charlton’s 1970 campaign, and four more in 1971.

Campaigned to the end of 1972 by South African drivers Piet de Klerk and Mayer Botha, ‘R8’ was eventually acquired in damaged condition by Australian resident and British Lotus enthusiast, the Hon. John Dawson-Damer. He painstakingly restored this important Formula 1 car to race-worthy condition and it is today the last of his renowned, eight-strong, Dawson-Damer Lotus Collection – six of which were sold by Bonhams in Sydney in 2008.

James Knight, Bonhams group motoring director, said: 'This car, chassis ‘R8’, was Graham Hill’s – it was also raced by that wonderful driver Richard Attwood to set fastest lap at Monaco in 1969, and private owner Dave Charlton drove it to become South African national Champion. Add the excellent provenance of it being offered direct from the famous Dawson-Damer Collection and plainly ‘R8’ is an iconic car.'

More information at Bonhams' website

Bonhams: Goodwood Festival of Speed


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