Colin Chapman archive

Great F1 cars of the last six decades: Lotus 72 (Autosport International) 16th January 2010, 14:07

The Lotus 72 is featured at this year’s Autosport International show as one of the great racing cars of the last six decades. Although 40 years have passed since the 72 first appeared its designer faced much the same challenges the likes of Adrian Newey do today: like how to make the car work on […]

Banned! Ground effect 7th June 2007, 7:00

The last in our series looking at F1 technologies that were banned looks at one innovation that the governing body were surely right to get rid of. Indeed, had they stepped in more quickly to rid the sport of ground effect cars, a series of terrifying crashes might have been avoided – and lives might […]

“Formula One 1973: Reign of Stewart” (DVD) 3rd June 2007, 7:00

The fourth in the Brunswick series of DVDs covers Jackie Stewart’s final championship victory – and final season. It was a year punctuated by some brilliant drives and some horrible accidents. Roger Williamson and Francois Cevert both lost their lives. But this excellent documentary presents even the more harrowing footage objectively and responsibly.

Banned! Four wheel drive 10th May 2007, 15:00

Several teams dabbled with four wheel drive cars before the technology was outlawed but all struggled to get enough of an advantage from the technology to justify the sacrifices made on other parts of the car. Often it was only when four-wheel drive power transmission was paired with other technologies that would be banned – […]

F1 in the blogs 25: Better than Chapman? 14th April 2007, 9:00

Colin Chapman produced some revolutionary cars each of which pushed F1 technology forward instantaneously in one huge leap. But the author of Post of the Week puts another designer forward as the greatest in motor racing history – and it’s not Gordon Murray, or even Adrian Newey. Plus the Felipe Massa backlash in the Italian […]

Banned! Gas turbine engines 8th March 2007, 12:00

Think of unconventional Formula 1 technology and you instantly think of Colin Chapman. The Lotus boss, who died 25 years ago, understood that innovation was not just positive for its own sake, but that it also had publicity value. His gas turbine powered 56B F1 car was plainly a case of the latter over the […]

Banned! Brabham-Alfa Romeo BT46B ‘Fan Car’ 22nd February 2007, 9:00

The 1970s was the decade of outrageous innovation that produced some of the most unusual cars ever to grace a racing circuit. Many were hideous failures that disappeared into obscurity. But Brabham’s ‘Fan Car’ did somewhat better, achieving a 100% victory rate. Which is to say it won one race, and then it was banned…

Banned! Lotus-Cosworth 88 & 88B 1st February 2007, 9:00

Continuing our series on technologies that have been banned from F1, this week we look at a rare example of an entire car that was banned before it could even race. Colin Chapman’s Lotus 88 was a victim of fraught political tensions at a time when the governing body and the British team were at […]