David Beard's Somewhat Strangely Varied Website
Lotus 16 in the film Grand Prix
film director John Frankenheimer died recently. Strangely, the obituary in the
Daily Telegraph excluded any reference to his 1966 film “Grand
Prix” The film had it’s faults, featuring a very tacky plot and
lots of thinly disguised FJ cars from Jim Russell. However, it also had some
excellent genuine footage of F1 at various circuits…and a
The scene went
like this. Scott Stoddard, a character combining elements of Jim Clark and
Jackie Stewart is at home recuperating in a grotesquely bandaged state after
The car was no wood embellished fake like the FJ cars: it was Lotus 16 chassis number 365, at the time owned by Bill Wilks.
scene was shot at a large house and garden near Goudhurst in
I had a call at work from Dick Crosthwaite and to be honest was not very keen, just earning a crust and running a Lotus 16 was quite enough for me. He persisted and mentioned that it was worth £25 a day but would probably be all over in 1 day. At this I agreed to go and arrived on the set early in the morning to find a large encampment all ready for action but no director. At about 8.30 John Frankenheimer arrived in a helicopter.
At the end of the day they asked if they could keep the car another day to film it going down the drive and produced Phil Hill as the driver so I agreed to this, as they did not need me. I briefed him about starting it and he stated that it was the easiest car to start that they had used. I gathered that some of the others had been something of a pain. When I asked for my goggles back they refused as mine were now props so I was given James Garners identical pair instead.”
At the time it
was the tradition for a painting to be commissioned of the latest F1 World
Champion in action. Thus Michael Turner was commissioned to produce a painting:
it depicted Roger Stoddard leading Mike Hawthorn’s Ferrari Dino at Spa.
It was clearly visible in the film…hanging over the mantle shelf in the
Stoddard home with a an engraved plaque below it (also produced by Michael
Turner) “ Roger Stoddard, World Champion” This painting and the two
others commissioned for the film (depicting Ferraris) were eventually sold off
in an MGM sale in