Category Archives: cars

The Festival of the Unexceptional


It’s a while since I photographed a car show, but the 2014 Festival of the Unexcpetional appealed to my sense of humour.  Described as a Concours de l’Ordinaire with ‘cars from the era that quality control forgot’…..Allegro’s, Maxi’s and Marina’s to name a few. Plus their owners. So, a small gallery as a flavour. For info about 2015, see: Festival-of-The-Unexceptional                    

Renault 6TL owners at Festival of the Unexceptional, Whittlebury Park

Buzz Aldrin, astronaut


From the archives….taken for Top Gear around 1998. Astronaut Buzz Aldrin with a Jaguar XJ220 at Bruntingthorpe Proving Ground in Leicestershire. And a most fortuitously placed vapour trail.  

Buzz Aldrin, astronaut from Apollo 11, who was the second man to walk on the moon, standing with Jaguar XJ220

Bruce Reynolds, Great Train Robber


One from the archives…..Bruce Reynolds,  the mastermind behind the Great Train Robbery. I came across this shoot this afternoon whilst sorting through a couple of old negative files. From 1997, I can’t remember the name of the magazine it was originally shot for. Bizarrely it went into liquidation before publication, and I had to retrieve all the film from a lock-up in North London…the only assets of the magazine I was entitled to claim back. HM Customs and Excise always have first pickings before the small folk. The story eventually appeared in The Telegraph, probably in 1998. Taken under bridge […]

Bruce Reynolds, Great Train Robber

Lotus 49


Kimi Raikkonen’s win at the Australian GP yesterday got me thinking about the last win for Lotus in an F1 race. I was reminded about a victory in 2012. But before that you have to go back to 1987 and Ayrton Senna at Detroit. Nice to see this team with a competitive car again. I couldn’t resist going through my archives to find these images of a Lotus 49…the car driven by both Jim Clark and Graham Hill. This particular car was driven by Hill. They are stills from a Top Gear shoot in 1997, with Tiff Needell at Snetterton.

Graham Hill's Lotus 49, driven at Snetterton by Tiff Needell

Sky gazing


As I spent many years chasing rainbows, sunsets, moonrises or any kind of moody excitement happening in the sky whilst on car shoots, I acquired the knickname ‘The Prince of Darkness’. A couple of jornalists in particular knew that if they came out with me, they would always miss their tea. Sorry guys!. Old habits die hard. But here are some shots for you, without tin boxes!. I found these photographs whilst searching for something else this afternoon. Taken a couple of years ago, they illustrate the spectacular cloud formations that can occur at certain times of the year on […]

British Grand Prix, Silverstone 2012


As always, the support races bring out historic cars which included the beautiful Ronnie Peterson Lotus 76 JPS (above). Below are three generations of Marborough, Marlborough-Mclaren, Mclaren-Mercedes cars from 1973, 1982 and 2012 respectively. I’m not sure it’s strictly correct to group these three cars together, but it does show the evolution of styles from the early 1970’s.   Pérez took a minor excursion here, and apart from a slightly dented ego, probably escaped with nothing more than a ‘what the bloody hell were you doing’ warning from the team principal.

Ronnie Peterson's Lotus 76 JPS from 1974

Chicago


They are from a shoot I did for Top Gear.. probably in 1999. Journo Peter Grunert and I spent a nightshift with a traffic officer in Chicago. Quite cool really, and were even passengers in a mini car chase with a speeding driver who decided not to stop on the Freeway. Those big American Fords handle like barges when weaving at 105mph!

The 1985 European Grand Prix at Brands Hatch


I had a crack at sorting out my office pinboard today. After peeling away layers of post it notes with computer passwords, obsolete account details and phone numbers, the tidy-up revealed a Grand Prix pass from 1985. Scarily, this may well have been there for 26 years. Not sure if it’s a record, but it’s surely worth a shout. The 1985 European Grand Prix at Brands Hatch was the first race I attended, and, from memory, was my first freelance car shoot. And as the rooky snapper, I was told to stand at the end of the main straight to […]

Ayrton Senna, European Grand Prix, 1985