S4268 Lola MK4 No.15 German GP 1962 – Roy Salvadori
It was a bold step. Lola, as a chassis manufacturer, had just little experience when entering the formula 1 in 1962. Strictly speaking, they have tried their best with the model types MK2 and MK3 in the Formula Junior (today Formula 3) for two years. No more.
So, the type MK4 was the first GP-car from Lola founder and designer Eric Broadley. The cars were driven under the team Bowmaker Racing whose manager was the former GP-pilot Reg Parnell. Bowmaker was a credit institution that took over the company Yeoman Credit at that time. In 1960, Yeoman Credit was in the Formula 1 with an own team and Cooper vehicles. To be accurate, Yeoman was the first sponsor from outside the Formula 1; years before the cigarette company “Gold Leaf” sponsored Lotus.
Back to Broadley and his first Formula 1 design. The MK4 was only constructed for a 1.5 litre Coventry-Climax engine. But a delay in the delivery of the engines forced the team Bowmaker to install four-cylinder engines of the type Mark II Coventry-Climax FPF for the both cars of Roy Salvadori and John Surtees. At least for the first tests and the first races. The first stake for the MK4 was a race in Brussel that didn’t count for the championship (yes, it was existing at the time). Little by little the Lola-chassis were converted to the 1.5 litre engines. But the MK4 was not a very successful construction. Surtees who was the first one getting more power was claiming the whole year that the chassis would twist. And he wasn’t that wrong. In Spa, when a mechanic jacked up the car, there was one wheel coming off the car while the others were staying. It shows how twisted the Lola was. Nevertheless: At the British and German GP Surtees got two times a podium as second place. His team mate Salvadori was not that lucky. He had seven DNFs in seven races and was announcing the end of his career as a Formula 1 race driver after the season.