THE death this week of former British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher can point to only one outcome for superstitious gamblers – a victory for Lotus in Sunday’s Chinese Grand Prix.
A flick through the sport’s record books shows the last four deaths of former British PMs have been followed immediately by victory for the Enstone team.
Edward Heath’s demise on 17 July, 2005 was followed on 24 July by success for Fernando Alonso in Germany with Renault, the team that is now Lotus and operates from the same English factory.
James Callaghan’s death on 26 March, 2005 came just before Alonso won in Bahrain for Renault.
In October 1995, Alec Douglas-Home died and Michael Schumacher won for Benetton, the team that went on to become Renault. Earlier that year, Schumacher triumphed in Monaco four days after Harold Wilson died.
Going further back, the first race after the death of Clement Attlee in October 1967 was won by... Scot Jim Clark in a Lotus.
Still not convinced enough to take a flutter on Lotus’s Kimi Raikkonen or Romain Grosjean? Then consider this – Thatcher’s son Mark was once the chairman of Lotus cars in North America.