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Chequered flag for £1.6m museum funding drive to honour double F1 champion Jim Clark

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Chequered flag for £1.6m museum funding drive to honour double F1 champion Jim Clark
Sep 21, 2017, 3:00 PM

A £1.

A £1.6 million museum in Scotland celebrating the career of two-time Formula 1 champion and Indianapolis 500 winner Jim Clark has secured funding.

The new museum, which aims to open in 2018, was announced during the 2013 Goodwood Revival, which marked the 50th anniversary since Clark's first F1 world championship win.

The five-year project aimed to turn the current Jim Clark Museum – a collection of his trophies and memorabilia last refurbished in 1993 – into a fully fledged modern museum in Duns, Scotland.

Since 2013, funding efforts, headed by the Jim Clark Trust, began, to bring the project to fruition.

The museum will exhibit cars spanning Clark's eight year F1, GT, rally and touring car career, during which he took 25 wins for Team Lotus on the way to becoming 1963 and '65 world champion; in '65 he skipped the Monaco Grand Prix to win the Indy 500.

"We're in touch with probably a dozen owners of Jim Clark cars and collaborating with Classic Team Lotus to display Jim Clark cars at the museum on a rotational basis," said Ben Smith, JCT Secretary.

"Many of the owners of the cars don't live in the UK and the cars aren't always being used but they feel that this is the spiritual home of Jim Clark and they're very happy for the cars to be exhibited here.

"We'd like to have an extension, and, even better, a David Coulthard or Allan McNish car so that the next generation can see the old cars and the new cars and make that connection."

In 1968, Clark won the single-seater Tasman Series and took a win from pole with the fastest lap in the South African GP with a short foray into NASCAR as well. He was killed in a Formula 2 race at Hockenheim, Germany, the same year, aged 32.

More memorabilia from his career will be displayed in the new museum to celebrate his career, which also included 32 F1 poles and 28 fastest laps over 72 starts, to inspire future generations to race in F1.

The museum also aims to facilitate education and work placement schemes for schools and colleges in the area with an interest in motorsport; restore classic cars; create a scenic Tourist Trail of nearby locations frequented by Clark and hold a Jim Clark Weekend every two years to further celebrate his career.

The Jim Clark Trust, formed by Clark's family in 1978 to organise public display of his trophies and memorabilia at the Scottish Borders Council Museum, collected £300,000 for the new project, part of which was crowdfunded.

Another £620,000 was pledged by the local council with another £645,000 supported by the Heritage Lottery Fund, which funds heritage projects around the UK with grants.

Three-time F1 champion Sir Jackie Stewart is Honorary President of the trust.

Other patrons of the JCT are four time IndyCar champion Dario Franchitti, triple Le Mans 24 Hours winner Allan McNish and former F1 driver David Coulthard.

“Jim Clark was not only the best racing driver I ever raced with and against [but] he was also a great friend – a wonderful ambassador for motorsport and indeed for Scotland,” said Stewart.

“It is only right that we honour his success and achievements.

“I am delighted the museum project has reached this crucial stage with the support of the Trust and I would like to thank Scottish Borders Council and Heritage Lottery Funding.

“The foundations of this project are heritage, education and inspiration bought to life through the story of Jimmy’s incredible career and significant influence on Scottish motorsport.

“If those values ring true to people around the world, I hope enthusiasts will join me in wishing the fundraising campaign every success.”

A further crowdfunding initiative to secure another £600,000 is underway, in order to expand the museum and showcase 10 cars with a completion date of up to 2019.

Donations to the Jim Clark Trust can be made at www.justgiving.com/jimclarktrust

Will you be visiting the new Jim Clark Museum - have you visited the existing rooms at Duns? Have your say in the comment section below.
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