Jaguar Mk1 - Big cat was first to head the pack
As I roll gently down the Brands Hatch pitlane, ready to head out for my first run of the day, I feel like a villain in an early James Bond film. There are no machine guns lurking in the headlights of this particular Mk1 Jag, but even lacking rocket launchers this car was the weapon of choice in the early days of the British Touring Car Championship in the late 1950s, and remains one of the top choices if you are a serious '50s historic tin-top racer today.
Everything about this car screams elegance and sophistication on the surface, but underneath the skin lurks the stuff of a seriously potent racing car. I've been on the receiving end of one of these big-engined beasts mercilessly thundering past on the Lavant Straight at Goodwood - they are seriously quick and I'm looking forward to seeing what this one can do.
In fact, this particular Mk1's former owner was driving one of three that blew me away at the 2014 Goodwood Revival. Stuart Graham and Richard Butterfield finished fourth in the St Mary's Trophy in one of the Big Cats, while I was limping Guy Harman's Fiat Abarth 1100 to the finish without the use of third gear.