One of the world's largest private collections of Lotus racers and road cars is to go under the hammer. Bonhams has consigned the Olav Glasius cars for its Goodwood Festival of Speed auction on 29 June and – we suspect conservatively – expects the 24-strong lot-list to amass more than £1.5 million.
In addition to an impressive array of rare and historic Lotus racers ranging from Mark VI to Marks VIII and IX, there is a Team Lotus works Le Mans veteran Eleven.
There is also an original and unspoiled Formula Junior Lotus 27 and ex-Formula 1/InterContinental Lotus Type 18. Low-mileage road cars include everything from Lotus Elite S2 to Esprit Turbo. Capping the collection is a trio of prototype/one-off concept cars.
So why is he selling? Racer Olav Glasius has hung up his racing overalls and is auctioning his collection “so that others can enjoy these wonderful machines”.
Motoring historian Doug Nye said: “There are few teams that encapsulate the romance of the ‘little guys beating the big guys’ better than Team Lotus and Olav Glasius’s remarkable collection, which he has assembled with such love and painstaking care over so many years, truly embodies the essence of what Colin and his successors have been all about."
James Knight, Group Motoring Director of Bonhams added: “We are both honoured and delighted to have been entrusted with the sale of Olav’s superb collection.
"The Lotus marque is hugely respected and boasts all the credentials you could wish for: an innovative and charismatic owner in Colin Chapman, one of the finest drivers the sport has ever known in Jim Clark, and manufacturer of sports and racing cars that could take on and beat the best the others could offer.
"We have enjoyed watching Olav successfully compete with his cars at historic racing events, including Goodwood, and it seems fitting that the collection will be offered for sale at the Festival of Speed where Lotus will be the event’s celebrated marque."
The Glasius Collection Ex-Team Lotus, Cliff Allison/Keith Hall 1956 Lotus Eleven 'Wide-body' Le Mans, photographed passing the Gordini of André Milhoux and Charles de Clareur at Le Mans in 1956. Estimate: £135-175,000
Lead image: Sam Moores