Leicestershire has many claims to fame. One; it has the world’s largest private collection of grand prix cars. Two; it has the world’s largest private collection of WW2 military vehicles.
Both have been on show at Donington Park in north west Leicestershire for many, many years. Alas, time moves on. On November 5, the military and grand prix museums at DP are closing. The Williams and McLarens had already been shipped out when me and my friend Chris got there yesterday. Lucky me, I’d had a personal tour from Kevin Wheatcroft, the owner, some years previous when it was in its prime. The grand prix collection had been a labour of love started by his dad Tom, the driving force behind the park’s legendary racing circuit, back in 1973.
So, here we are, a few lingering snaps of two remarkable museums.
(Meanwhile, more pix of how the military museum was in 2012 can be found on this link, from a previous post: http: //leicestershirelalala.com/the-wheatcroft-collection-the-future-war-rock-music/ )
Okay, first up we have a 1975 Hesketh 3080. The car’s fairly sniggersome advertising may you tell something about Formula 1’s key demographics. So, to go through it, that’s Penthouse, Rizla and Cossack men’s hairspray. So that’s wanking, smoking and grooming covered. Less said about the porno maid the better.
The Trojan T101 for Formula 5000. It won loads of races. Do note that Trojan make cars and not condoms.
Now, on to something more serious. Roger Williamson was a talented racer who was backed by Tom Wheatcroft, former owner and driving force behind Donington Park (RIP 2009). Roger, sadly, predeceased Tom by many years. Roger died during the Netherlands Grand Prix in 1973 in tragic and totally avoidable circumstances. Roger will be the subject of a future post.
Roger Williamson’s car below.
I think this is possibly Eddie Irvine’s Jaguar…
Like most racing fans, Kevin and Tom Wheatcroft were devotees of Tazio Nuvolari. The amazing Italian won the British Grand Prix at Donington in 1938, having mown down a stag in qualifying.