Posted May 18th 2012 6:15PM
Over half a century ago on this day in 1958, one of the most successful teams in Formula 1 history made their first appearance in the sport. Monaco, France was the setting where Team Lotus, the motorsport division of the then six-year-old brainchild of Colin Chapman (Lotus), made their debut into single-seat racing after dominating in Le Mans in 1957.
Team Lotus' drivers, Cliff Allison and Graham Hill, drove the well engineered, but ultimately unsuccessful 2.2 litre Lotus Type 12 which also saw action in Formula 2. The car was designed with the qualities Lotus are known for - low weight and high power. Despite it all however, the Type 12 was always overshadowed by the mid-engined Cooper race cars of the time.
That year was a victory for one Maurice Trintignant who took first place driving a Cooper. Allison finished in sixth place, 13 laps behind, while Hill ended up in 26th. Chapman was not dissuaded. He used what he learned in defeat and ended up with the Lotus Type 18 which Stirling Cooper would drive to victory two years later.
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News Source: History