Ashton’s President’s Prattle for May, 2017

President's Prattle


Well, what an amazing effort Lotus owners have put in recently!

Of course, two weeks ago was the biennial Lotus gathering, held by LCV in and around the beautiful setting of Beachworth and attended by comers from all over.

The weekend involved, by all accounts, a fine array of Lotus cars from Sevens all the way through to the most recent V6 Exiges and Evoras. Thank you to everyone who supported this fantastic custom and well done to all those who took away the lovely trophies from the trackday, kindly provided by Harrop Engineering. Thanks, of course, are also due to the other major sponsors of the event – Shannons and Lotus Cars Australia (aka Simply Sports Cars).

This week has been Targa Tasmania, proudly and very visibly sponsored by Lotus Cars Australia, following the inaugural sponsorship at Targa High Country in November last year.

Targa Tasmania is without doubt the high point of the tarmac rally season, which makes it all the more impressive that Lotus took out two of the top three places in the GT Trophy. Many congratulations to Jeff and Jarrod for their “first by a country mile” win (they were TEN MINUTES ahead of the second place finishers!) And, in Third place, many congratulations too to Martin and Richard. Brilliant work guys – all the more so for the fairly average weather conditions.

I’m sorry that, due to work commitments, I was unable to join either of these events, but I have seen lots of lovely photographs and they all say the same thing – everyone was having a ball, which is just as it should be.

Speaking of which, there’s a lot coming up in the next few weeks and months.

Of course there’s the JAAAG round of the CSCA on the 13th of May at Eastern Creek – there are still some places, so all those slow coaches, there’s still time. Then there’s the Mountain Rally coming up at the end of May, which unfortunately coincides with Historic Winton. Big decision as to which to participate in – take the Elan to the Mountain Rally, or take the Eleven to Winton.. dilemmas, dilemmas! Nice problem to have, mind you.

Looking slightly further afield, we have the prospect of a truly huge gathering of Lotus cars from all over the world in August. Brian Caldersmith has been beavering away (around having major surgery) to develop a wonderful celebration of the Type 14 Elite, which celebrates its Diamond Anniversary this year.

Featuring a set of additional celebrations to boot, Brian has pulled together a great meet at the CMC’s Shannon’s Day. Club Lotus has exclusive use of the South Circuit area, giving us room for 60 cars, around 30 of which are likely to be Elites coming from all over the world (literally, they are shipping in from the US, NZ, the UK). We are trying to get as many cars out of the woodwork as possible, so if you know someone who should get their car out more often, give them a shove. And come along yourself! If we need to buy more tickets, we are happy to do so, so don’t let that be the limiting factor.

CLA will be putting on a lunch BBQ on Sunday. Make a weekend of it by entering the Morgan round of the CSCA series the day before, then round it off by coming to dinner on the Saturday night. All in all, a great weekend to look forward to.

Lastly, I am quietly hoping to be a bit more visible as I have recently finished a rather gruelling two years with my former employer and joined the company who were previously my client. So, hopefully it’ll give me more time to get out and about, be more involved, and enjoy my cars a bit more. And, having just recommissioned a 1958 Land Rover Series 2, I now have a period tow car for my Eleven!

On top of that, having been accepted to run in the 2019 Peking to Paris, my co-pilot Giles Cooper (who many of you may know through Aussie Elises) and I have a couple of years to get the car (my Austin Healey 100/4) and ourselves fully match fit in time to drive for 36 days halfway around the world in aid of Beyond Blue (in Maurice’s memory) and Cancer Council of Queensland (who Giles has to thank for his being able to join me on this madcap scheme). Wish us luck!

So, with that, I shall leave you to read the rest of Tom’s magnificent creation, and I look forward to seeing you out and about.

In the meantime, keep it safe, upright and on the black stuff.

Pip pip,

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