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J.V. Bedford's Lotus Seven S2


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#1 Gokart Mozart

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Posted 14 September 2021 - 20:41

Dear TNF,

 

It's been a decade since I started a thread, but we recently purchased a car that we thought had terrific history here in the US, a 1962 Lotus Seven S2.

However, a few weeks back, after some late night hours reading up on previous owners- it came to my attention that its first owner, whom I found from the Lotus Seven Register as 'J. Bedford' was the late John Victor Bedford, who raced his Seven in England in 1962 and 1963.

 

Mr Bedford was a renowned artifact historian and upon his death in 2019, donated much of his historical research to the University of Leeds. This, however, did not include his slice of racing. Thus, I've been looking to find any photos of him racing, in what was in 1962, a green Seven and in 1963, repainted red.

 

The car in question most likely wore the UK registration of 661 CXT- that is what it wore in its first races with Willis Weldin in the US when he purchased it from Ian Raby.

 

The following are the events we know he was entered:

April 21, 1962 - BRSCC Rufforth - 2nd place S1.2

June 9, 1962 - BRSCC Castle Combe

July 7, 1962 - BARC Goodwood - Handicap A - Fastest Lap

August 11, 1962 - Silverstone 6 hr Relay - Club Lotus All Sorts - #1F

 

May 18, 1963 - BARC Goodwood - #125

 

As always, thank you for your time and consideration.

 

Respectfully Yours,

 

Jacques N. Dresang

Kettle Moraine Preservation & Restoration


Edited by Gokart Mozart, 14 September 2021 - 20:44.


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#2 bradbury west

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Posted 14 September 2021 - 21:03

Perhaps someone might put up a link to the wonderful REVS Institute photo archives.I cannot, it seems. I suspect the George Phillips archives will have some photographs.
Roger Lund



#3 Gokart Mozart

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Posted 15 September 2021 - 01:08

Thank you Roger,

I have combed the REVs archive the last few weeks and haven't come up with anything sadly. I found photos last year via REVs of the car on US soil, but its initial years racing in England still evade me. Granted, it would help if I knew all the numbers Mr. Bedford sported, as not all photos show the registration plates. I suppose filling those gaps would get me closer as well...

Jacques

#4 RobMk2a

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Posted 15 September 2021 - 20:58

Goodwood

7th July 1962 

 

Event 5 Handicap Race A

 

79 D? Bedford Lotus Ford Retired lap 5 spin.

 

Event 6 Scratch Race Sports cars to 1200cc 

 

79 J Bedford Lotus Ford dns 

 

18th May 1963 

Event 7 Handicap Race A 

 

125 JV Bedford Lotus ford 1498cc 5th 

 

Source Robert Barker A Record of Motor Racing at Goodwood 



#5 Rupertlt1

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Posted 16 September 2021 - 11:01

August 11, 1962 - Silverstone 6 hr Relay - Club Lotus All Sorts - #1F

 

Bingo!

 

There is a photograph of J. V. Bedford's Lotus in the centre-spread of Motor Sport, September 1962.

Caption:

"COME ONCOME ON."—Colin Chapman impatiently reaches

for the all-important sash from J. V. Bedford's returning car. He

subsequently lapped in around 1 min 13 sec in this rather special

disc-braked, i.r.s, Lotus 7.

 

Ready to depart #1D, the car of A. C. B. Chapman/H. Haskell. He was Hugh Haskell. 

 

Original photograph may be available via LAT Photographic? PM me with email address.

 

See also: https://forums.autos...s/#entry9607848

 

RGDS RLT   


Edited by Rupertlt1, 16 September 2021 - 12:12.


#6 Gokart Mozart

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Posted 16 September 2021 - 14:35

Goodwood

7th July 1962 

 

Event 5 Handicap Race A

 

79 D? Bedford Lotus Ford Retired lap 5 spin.

 

Event 6 Scratch Race Sports cars to 1200cc 

 

79 J Bedford Lotus Ford dns 

 

18th May 1963 

Event 7 Handicap Race A 

 

125 JV Bedford Lotus ford 1498cc 5th 

 

Source Robert Barker A Record of Motor Racing at Goodwood 

Beautiful Rob- thank you!



#7 Gokart Mozart

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Posted 16 September 2021 - 14:36

August 11, 1962 - Silverstone 6 hr Relay - Club Lotus All Sorts - #1F

 

Bingo!

 

There is a photograph of J. V. Bedford's Lotus in the centre-spread of Motor Sport, September 1962.

Caption:

"COME ONCOME ON."—Colin Chapman impatiently reaches

for the all-important sash from J. V. Bedford's returning car. He

subsequently lapped in around 1 min 13 sec in this rather special

disc-braked, i.r.s, Lotus 7.

 

Ready to depart #1D, the car of A. C. B. Chapman/H. Haskell. He was Hugh Haskell. 

 

Original photograph may be available via LAT Photographic? PM me with email address.

 

See also: https://forums.autos...s/#entry9607848

 

RGDS RLT   

Terrific RLT!

 

I found the photo in the Motorsport- what a find! The car came to the US with a black band around the nose- so it is great to see it there! I'll gladly message you.

 

JD



#8 RobMk2a

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Posted 16 September 2021 - 17:29

Brands Hatch 6th May 1962 

BRSCC

 

Event Eleven 

Up to 1000cc Sports Car Race 

 

164 JV Bedford Lotus Ford 997cc 

 

Brands Hatch 22nd July 1962 

BRSCC 

 

Event Twelve 

Up to 1000cc Sports Car Race

 

201 JV Bedford Lotus Ford 997cc 



#9 cooper997

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Posted 17 September 2021 - 08:04

Bedford gets a brief mention in the 17/8/62 Autosport Silverstone 6 Hour report. The Chapman Lotus 7 gets a photo.

 

John Hendy's related photos are here (although it looks like Chapman's 7 is again the one photographed).

https://mydadsphotos..._silv_6hr_1962/

 

 

Stephen



#10 Gokart Mozart

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Posted 20 September 2021 - 15:37

20210916-071043_orig.jpg

 

Here is the attached photo from the September, 1962 MOTORSPORT.

 

I appreciate everyone's help thus far- and to think a month ago, I didn't even know the car raced in England before it was exported!

 

There are two larger tubes behind the seat that that roll hoop would have slid into and been fastened to- it all makes sense now.

 

Hopefully I can find a few more photos to help confirm a few things.

 

All the best!

 

Jacques



#11 Gokart Mozart

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Posted 27 September 2021 - 17:40

I came upon a BRSCC 1962 year in review video and I think I may have spotted the car from the April 21, 1962 Rufforth meet- just need a confirmation on a number. I have a hunch it is the #73 machine, but I'd be fine being proved wrong!

 

All the best to all following- my appreciation is through the roof.

 

Respectfully Yours,

 

Jacques N. Dresang

kmvintage.net



#12 Rupertlt1

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Posted 27 September 2021 - 19:56

Rufforth, B.R.S.C.C., 21 April 1962

Race 1 was a 10-lap scratch race for

sports cars up to 1,200 c.c. In this one

J. D. Robertshaw (Sprite) was never

headed. Gaining some 20 secs. lead by

lap four, he ran out an easy winner

from J. V. Bedford (Lotus VII), who

had taken third man, D. Linton (Terrier

Mk II.), on the last lap.

Autosport, 4 May 1962, Page 640

 

RGDS RLT



#13 Gokart Mozart

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Posted 05 October 2021 - 14:47

uk-info_orig.png

 

Here is what we can assemble together thus far as to J.V. Beford's Seven from 1962-1963- much thanks to the aid of some wonderful folks here on TNF.

I do not have a purchase date from Raby, but if you look at the Autosport ads in mid 1962, he's already looking for Sevens.

I've been in contact with the car's first U.S. owner, Willis Weldin, but he cannot recall if it came to him in late 1963 or early 1964, but I have records of him racing the car on May 17, 1964 at Cumberland Airfield in Maryland.


Edited by Gokart Mozart, 06 October 2021 - 19:47.


#14 raceannouncer2003

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Posted 06 October 2021 - 05:45

Have you seen this ?  It appears his last name was Weldin, not Welden.  He was entered in Cumberland in 1965 too.

 

https://www.racingsp...Weldin-USA.html

 

Vince H.



#15 Gokart Mozart

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Posted 06 October 2021 - 19:54

Have you seen this ?  It appears his last name was Weldin, not Welden.  He was entered in Cumberland in 1965 too.

 

https://www.racingsp...Weldin-USA.html

 

Vince H.

Hey Vince- its been a while!

 

I have seen those results and yes, it is Weldin. I had it right in the spreadsheet, but not in the post. My error. However, that site also shows it as Weldon, so there are three variations of results on there with two wrong spellings! I corresponded with him three weeks ago, so you'd think I'd have it down by now.

 

My post on TNF had to do with the car's history in the UK before it was exported, as I'm trying to get a good idea of what the car looked like, as we have it down to the frame for repairs at the moment and hope to restore it carrying its original livery as a racer from 1962.

 

I have 26 events on file in the lower part of the spreadsheet in which I cut off; with Weldin, his brother Jacob and Marilyn Alderman driving the car from May 1964 to September 1968 here in the US. I'll gladly post it if there is interest.

 

All the best-

 

Jacques


Edited by Gokart Mozart, 06 October 2021 - 19:57.


#16 Gokart Mozart

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Posted 27 October 2021 - 19:14

Greetings all-
 
In early September, I reached out to the University of Leeds library, as they are the caretakers of Mr. Bedford's personal historical research for his given field. A head researcher there by the name of Rhiannon Lawrence-Francis granted my request for John's racing history, especially pertaining to a man who himself researched his entire life for his trade of antiques and 'dabbled' in motorsport in the early 1960s.Rhiannon thus put me in touch with some of Mr. Bedfords friends and colleagues, who were all-to-happy to share what they knew of him, including photographing some of his trophies, which in turn led to more results due to what was engraved on them.
 
I can't help to think if John ever wondered what happened to his old Seven before his passing in 2019, and I'd like to think he'd be thrilled to know it still is around.
I'm so glad I sent an email to Leeds, as if I hadn't, I'd have never known so much about the car, and for that matter John Bedford.
 
Little did we know he painted it red as soon as it became a race car!
 
Special thanks to Rhiannon, Paul Clarke, Richard Noye and Louise Goosen for their tremendous help in honoring John.
 
The following is what came my way, and I've added a caption for each.
 
1961-august-build2_orig.jpg
August 1961 - John Victor Bedford with his new Seven S2. Photo by William Bedford.
 
1962-march25-brandshatch3_orig.jpg
March 25, 1962 - '661 CXT' makes its first appearance of 1962 at Brands Hatch. It was an event run by the Tunbridge Wells Motor Club. Photo by Tim Stowell.
 
1962-july7-goodwood2_orig.jpg
July 7, 1962 - Bedford and an unknown lad by the name of 'Doug' line up at Goodwood on July 7, 1962.
 
1962-july7-goodwood_orig.jpg

July 7, 1962 - Bedford lines up for the BARC Goodwood 'Handicap A' event, where he'd achieve fast lap before spinning out into an earth bank.

 

1962-jul7-goodwood_orig.jpg

July 7, 1962
Bedford and friends look over crash damage sustained in the race, where after setting fast lap, the Seven spun and hit an earth bank surrounding the circuit.

You'll see that the rear fenders are not facing the same direction as the front.

 

1962-july22-brandshatch_orig.jpg

July 22, 1962 - The Seven was repaired for the BRSCC Brands Hatch event two weeks later, where Bedford ran the car in the 'Up to 1000cc' category, though the results are currently unknown.

 

In other news, the first US owner, Willis Weldin, found the original rear '661 CXT' reg plate and is mailing it to me to rejoin the car. He purchased the car through Ian Raby, who was buying and exporting a lot of Sevens at that time.



#17 raceannouncer2003

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Posted 28 October 2021 - 05:08

Amazing...great stuff !!!

 

Vince H.