LOLA HERITAGE SCRAPBOOK
A successful return to Brands Hatch after 49 years for the first Lola to run in F1.
In 1961 Eric Broadley built his first rear engined car: the Mark 3 for Formula Junior. The customer for the ninth of the eleven cars built (BRJ-38) was BOAC airline pilot Hugh Dibley. Toward the end of the season, Dibley had Ford engine tuner's Holbay build a longer stroke engine to increase the capacity up to the then F1 limit of 1500ccs. BRJ-38 was then entered in the non-championship 'Lewis Evans Trophy' for F1 cars at Brands Hatch on 1st October 1961. The Mark 3 and Dibley acquitted themselves well and ran as high as fourth before a wheel bearing failed. Thus BRJ-38 became Lola’s first Formula 1 car!
Later Dibley sold the car to Dutch/Canadian Ernie de Vos who won the US East Coast Formula Junior championship the following year. The car remained in Canada until the mid-1970s when the chassis, original Hewland Mark 1 gearbox, rear uprights and some bodywork returned to the UK. David Pratley acquired the remains in 1999 and returned the car to its original F1 specification including Dibley's Scuderia Light Blue livery. BRJ-38 was subsequently honoured to be invited to take part in Lola Cars 50th Anniversary parade through the streets of Huntington with the original owner at the wheel.
The car has recently been acquired by HGPCA chairman, Barry Cannell. Barry has been getting to grips with the car and on 4th July 2010 ran it at the HSCC Superprix meeting at Brands Hatch which celebrated the 50th anniversary of the iconic British circuit. On its return to the circuit, nearly 49 years after its first appearance, Barry took a superb third in class with pushrod Ford engine and drum brakes against remaining class opposition with superior engine and stopping power. Appropriately, Hugh Dibley was an honoured guest at the meeting and witnessed the successful return of his old car.