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THE LOLA Mk4 - 4A

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Considering their only moderate success in F Junior with the Mk2 and Mk3 in 1960 and 1961 it is perhaps surprising that 1962 saw Lola's true debut as a Formula 1 manufacturer. The Bowmaker Racing Team would be responsible for running the new design, the Lola Mk4, and although Bowmaker was a new name to F1 both the team and it's backers already had a notable Grand Prix pedigree.

The Samengo-Turner family, owners of Yeoman Credit Ltd, had been connected with F1 for several years, their first full season was in 1960 as sponsors for the Ken Gregory-run team of three Cooper T51s. The cars were entered under the Yeoman Credit Racing Team name and interestingly this was the first sponsored GP team in F1.

At the end of 1960 Yeoman Credit moved from Ken Gregory's BRP team and approached Reg Parnell to run a F1 team for them in 1961. This new team continued to use the Yeoman Credit Racing Team name and entered a pair of Cooper T53s for John Surtees and Roy Salvadori with some success, both drivers winning non-championship F1 races. For the next year, 1962, the team took on the running of the new Lola Mk4 and as Yeoman Credit had effectively sold out to Bowmaker Finance there was a change of name to the Bowmaker Racing Team although the three Samengo-Turner brothers continued to be involved.
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The design of the Mk4 continued along the lines Eric Broadley had developed in his earlier F Junior cars, the chassis was a bronze welded spaceframe of 18 and 20 gauge tubing of 1.25", 1" and 0.75" diameters, as before it was fully triangulated and three perforated steel and one tubular steel bulkheads added to the stiffness. On completion the frame was stove enamelled in a fetching shade of yellow.

Suspension at the front was slightly unusual, at the top was a single fabricated transverse link with a trailing link that helped feed the loads through the chassis, at the bottom there was a reversed wishbone also with a trailing link. The top wishbone was fitted with steel Unibal bearings whilst the lower used rubber bearings inboard and nylon bearings outboard. The co-axial coil springs and Armstrong dampers were outboard and Alford and Adler forged uprights, based on the Triumph Herald unit, were employed, the steering arms from the rack and pinion Elektron case were located well-forward of the wheel centre. At the rear there were double reversed, adjustable wishbones, both employed steel Unibal bearings inboard and nylon bearings outboard. In addition twin radius rods were fitted, as were Hardy Spicer splined driveshafts, adjustable anti-roll bars were used front and rear.
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Brakes were outboard Girling units all-round with 10" discs at the front and 9.5" discs at the rear operated by a standard twin hydraulic system. The 2.5 inch core block water radiator was at the front with the main longitudinal chassis members (covered in expanded polystyrene for driver protection) doubling as water pipes, an oil cooler was fitted in front of the radiator. Fuel capacity was 26 gallons (118 litres) split between up to four aluminium tanks, one behind the driver, two side tanks and one forward of the instrument panel. A Colotti Type 32 5-speed gearbox and a multiple dry plate clutch transmitted the power. Wheels were a cast Elektron light alloy spoked Lola design with 6 inch rims at the front and either 6 0r 7 inch at the rear, tyres were Dunlops 500X15 at the front, 600X15 at the rear.

Bodywork came in four fibreglass sections, nose (fitted with perspex windscreen), tail, front undertray and belly, rear undertray and belly.

The Mk4 was designed to accept the 1.5 litre Coventry Climax V8 but late delivery meant that for testing and early races Bowmaker had to use the earlier 4 cylinder Mark II Coventry Climax FPF. The intended Climax V8 had a capacity of 1,494 cc with a bore of 63mm and a stroke of 60mm, it was tilted 15 degrees to the driver's right. Fitted with 4 twin-choke 38mm downdraught Webers and Lucas transistorised ignition it produced 174 bhp at 8600 rpm.
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The Mk4 made its debut at the non-championship Brussels GP at Heysel in March, using the Climax FPF Surtees finished fifth in the first Heat but retired in the second. After another non-championship event at Snetterton the first of the V8 cars appeared for Surtees in the Richmond Trophy where he retired with a jammed throttle after sharing the fastest lap with Jim Clark. The Mk4 made it's Championship debut in the Dutch GP at Zandvoort where both Surtees and Salvadori had V8 engines. Showing the potential of the car Surtees took pole but retired when a wishbone broke and the team withdrew Salvadori in case there was a similar problem with his car. Following a lack-lustre fourth at Monaco for Big John it wasn't to be long before the Mk4 won it's first race when Surtees won the non-championship 2000 Guineas at Mallory Park in a strong field that included Jim Clark, Jack Brabham, Graham Hill and Michael Parkes.

John Surtees had maintained for most of the season that the chassis was suffering from flexing and when a mechanic jacked up the car at Spa one wheel went up the other three didn't! Emergency strengthening by welding extra tubes around the cockpit was the instant solution and resuled in fifth for Surtees.

The new modifications seemed to help and at Aintree for the British GP Surtees qualified second behind Jim Clark and that was the position they finished in. The Mk4's good form continued at the Nürburgring where in one of the appalling wet and misty days that only the NordSchleife seemed able to produce Surtees took a fighting second 2.5 seconds behind Graham Hill's BRM.
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The last Mk4 chassis to be built had additional paneling riveted to the chassis and had fabricated front uprights similar to the Lotus 25 design. It was described as a semi-monocoque and given the MK4A type number although the Lola Chassis Log has it as a Mk4.

Despite the introduction of the revised Mk4A Surtees found himself becoming less competitive as the other leading teams moved ahead, the Lola cause was not helped by their financial backing drying up as Bowmaker were having business problems. For the rest of the season results were poor as a lack of reliability prevented any good finishes.

At the end of the 1962 season two of the cars were fitted with 2.7 litre Coventry Climax engines and taken "down-under" for the Tasman series. Driven by Surtees, Tony Maggs and Masten Gregory, the highlights were Surtees taking the laurels at the New Zealand GP in January 1963 and Lakeside in February as well as finishing second in the Australian GP in the same month.

With the withdrawal of the Bowmaker backing the team continued into 1963 as Reg Parnell (Racing) Ltd with a Mk4 and a Mk4A being run as a second string option to a pair of Lotus-Climax 24s. The cars were driven by a wide variety of pilots, notably Mike Hailwood and an emerging young Chris Amon, the Mk4s were now heavily outclassed and no significant results were obtained. Another Mk4 was sold to talented privateer Bob Anderson who concentrated on non-championship races and he celebrated Lola's second F1 victory when he took first at the Rome GP.

(With grateful thanks to Marc Fenijn for additional information)
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Mk4

Year(s) of Construction: 1962

Total Built: 3 (2 Mk4s - 1 Mk4A)

DIMENSIONS
Wheelbase: 94 inches (239 cm)
Track: Front 51 inches (129.5 cms) Rear 51 inches (129.5 cms)
Length: 148 inches (376 cms)
Weight: 1060 lbs (481 kg) without fuel

Mk4 Results 1962


RACE (NC= Non-championship) DRIVER CHASSIS QUAL. RESULT
 
IV Grand Prix de Bruxelles, Heysel (NC) John Surtees MK4 BRGP41 Climax FPF 10th 5th Heat 1
Retired Heat 2 - Engine
 
III Lombank Trophy, Snetterton (NC) John Surtees MK4 BRGP41 Climax FPF 4th Retired - Overheating
 
XIV Lavant Cup, Goodwood (NC) John Surtees
Roy Salvadori
MK4 BRGP41 Climax FPF
MK4 BRGP43 Climax FPF
3rd
5th
Retired - Accident
2nd
 
X Glover Trophy, Goodwood (NC) John Surtees
Roy Salvadori
MK4 BRGP42 Climax V8
MK4 BRGP43 Climax FPF
5th
10th
Retired - Engine
4th
 
VII Aintree 200 (NC) John Surtees
Roy Salvadori
MK4 BRGP42 Climax V8
MK4 BRGP43 Climax FPF
3rd
15th
Retired - Valve gear
Retired - Throttle linkage
 
X Dutch GP, Zandvoort John Surtees
Roy Salvadori
MK4 BRGP42 Climax V8
MK4 BRGP43 Climax V8
1st
17th
Retired - Broken wishbone
Retired - Withdrawn
 
XX Monaco GP John Surtees
Roy Salvadori
MK4 BRGP42 Climax V8
MK4 BRGP43 Climax V8
11th
12th
4th
Retired - Suspension
 
I International 2000 Guineas, Mallory Park (NC) John Surtees MK4 BRGP42 Climax V8 4th 1st
 
XIII Crystal Palace Trophy (NC) Roy Salvadori MK4 BRGP43 Climax V8 1st 2nd
 
XXI Belgian GP, Spa-Francorchamps John Surtees MK4 BRGP42 Climax V8 11th 5th
 
III Grand Prix de Reims (NC) John Surtees
Roy Salvadori
MK4 BRGP42 Climax V8
MK4 BRGP43 Climax V8
3rd
7th
Retired - Valve spring
6th
 
XLVIII French GP, Rouen-les-Essarts John Surtees
Roy Salvadori
MK4 BRGP42 Climax V8
MK4 BRGP43 Climax V8
5th
14th
5th
Retired - Oil pressure
 
XV British GP, Aintree John Surtees
Roy Salvadori
MK4 BRGP42 Climax V8
MK4 BRGP43 Climax V8
2nd
11th
2nd
Retired - Battery
 
XXIV German GP, Nürburgring John Surtees
Roy Salvadori
MK4 BRGP42 Climax V8
MK4 BRGP43 Climax V8
4th
9th
2nd
Retired - Gearbox
 
VIII Kanonloppet, Karlskoga (NC) Roy Salvadori MK4 BRGP43 Climax V8 4th 2nd
 
III Grote Prijs van Danske (NC) Roy Salvadori MK4 BRGP42 Climax V8 5th 7th Heat 1
Retired Heat 2 - Accident
 
IX Gold Cup (NC) John Surtees
Roy Salvadori
MK4 BRGP42 Climax V8
MK4 BRGP43 Climax V8
6th
11th
Retired - Valve
Retired - Throttle
 
XXXIII Italian GP, Monza Roy Salvadori MK4 BRGP43 Climax V8 13th Retired - Valve
 
IV USA GP, Watkins Glen John Surtees MK4 BRGP43 Climax V8 18th Retired - Crankcase plug
 
I Mexican GP, Mexico City (NC) John Surtees MK4 BRGP43 Climax V8 8th Retired - Accident rear suspension failure
 
V Rand GP, Kyalami (NC) John Surtees MK4 BRGP42 Climax V8 4th 3rd
 
IX South African GP, East London John Surtees
Roy Salvadori
MK4 BRGP42 Climax V8
MK4 BRGP43 Climax V8
5th
11th
Retired - Valve
Retired - Fuel tank leak

Mk4A Results

1964

DATE
VENUE/MEETING
CAR
DRIVER
NOTES
7th December Levin - WCC sprint meeting Lola Mk4A Rex Flowers F.T.D.
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Mk4A Results 1962


RACE (NC= Non-championship) DRIVER CHASSIS QUAL. RESULT
 
VIII Kanonloppet, Karlskoga (NC) John Surtees MK4 BRGP44 Climax V8 1st Retired - Valve spring
 
III Grote Prijs van Danske (NC) John Surtees MK4 BRGP44 Climax V8 3rd 4th Heat 1
3rd Heat 2
Retired - Ignition
 
XXXIII Italian GP, Monza John Surtees MK4 BRGP44 Climax V8 8th Retired - Piston
 
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Mk4A Results 1963


RACE (NC= Non-championship) DRIVER CHASSIS QUAL. RESULT
 
XI Glover Trophy, Goodwood (NC) Chris Amon MK4 BRGP44 Climax V8 7th 5th
 
VIII Aintree 200 (NC) Chris Amon MK4 BRGP44 Climax V8 10th 6th
 
XV International Trophy, Silverstone (NC) Chris Amon MK4 BRGP44 Climax V8 13th Retired - Oil seal
 
XXI Monaco GP Maurice Trintignant MK4 BRGP44 Climax V8 14th Retired - Clutch
 
XXII Belgian GP, Spa-Francorchamps Chris Amon MK4 BRGP44 Climax V8 15th Retired - Oil leak
 
XI Grand Prijs van Netherland, Zandvoort Chris Amon MK4 BRGP44 Climax V8 12th Retired - Water pump drive
 
XLVIII French GP, Reims-Gueux Chris Amon MK4 BRGP44 Climax V8 15th 7th
 
XVI British GP, Silverstone Chris Amon MK4 BRGP44 Climax V8 14th 7th
 
XIII Grand Prix der Solitude (NC) Chris Amon MK4 BRGP44 Climax V8 8th Retired - Big end bearings
 
XXIV German GP, Nürburgring Chris Amon MK4 BRGP44 Climax V8 14th Retired - Steering
 
XXXIV Italian GP, Monza Chris Amon MK4 BRGP44 Climax V8 DNQ DNS
 
V USA GP, Watkins Glen Masten Gregory MK4 BRGP43 Climax V8 8th Retired - Big end bearings
 
II Mexican GP, Mexico City Masten Gregory MK4 BRGP43 Climax V8 14th Retired - Radius rod bolt
 
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HISTORIC RACE WINS:

1998

DATE
VENUE/MEETING
CAR
DRIVER
NOTES
18th-20th September Goodwood - Goodwood Motor Circuit Revival Meeting Lola Mk4 Danny Sullivan Winner Glover Trophy for 1.5 litre F1 cars 1961-65

2010

DATE
VENUE/MEETING
CAR
DRIVER
NOTES
3rd-4th July Brands Hatch - HSCC Super Prix Lola Mk4A Mark Piercy Arbuthnot Latham HGPCA Silver Trophy Race - First Overall

2011

DATE
VENUE/MEETING
CAR
DRIVER
NOTES
23rd July Silverstone - Classic Lola Mk4 Mark Piercy HGPCA pre'66 Grand Prix Cars - Race 1 - Winner Class 11
24th July Silverstone - Classic Lola Mk4 Mark Piercy HGPCA pre'66 Grand Prix Cars - Race 2 - Winner Class 11
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Mk4 Downloads

During the 1962 season Bowmaker published a small 14 page booklet promoting their F1 team, it contains a write up on the team, pictures of the cars, circuit maps etc.

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Bowmaker Racing Team promotional booklet, 14 pages. (9.3Mb zip file)


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