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Character Spotlight Chairman Leslie King

Some details of my involvement both two wheel and for wheel

In my younger days I was very keen on  motorcycles and in fact this interest ended tragically when one of my younger brothers Ian was killed racing at the Temple 100 and he was the Regal 600 Champion that year. Interestingly he and Joey Dunlop shared the same Manager Davy Wood

I had two road bikes , Honda 400/4 and a VFR750 both that I had from new with very little mileage and they had to go, partly from domestic pressure and a sense of guilt as I probably got him interested in bikes and I was one of his sponsors

From a four wheel point of view my first car was a Triumph TR2 bought in 1968  from a guy called Ricky Busteed who still turns up at some of our events

My first competition car was a Lotus Elan which was painted in Team Lotus colours and this had been raced at Kirkistown by two brothers, it had slicks on it when I bought it but it was going to be used as my road car so they had to go

The Thoroughbred Club had just been formed so I joined and competed in some Autotests ,the only one I remember was one held in Whitehead Carpark

Although I am not a Founder Member I can certainly claim to be one of the original members and still here

I was very keen on Lotus cars and had Lotus Eclat, Lotus Esprit and my first Lotus was OLR 11E which was a yellow BDA engine Elan which turned up years later at events owned by Roy and he had this car for a few years

As you know I had a replica GT40 with the Rover V8 and I competed at Croft but mostly at Cultra

You can’t get it right all the time!

Had this car for 18 years

Eventually time took its toll I couldn’t get out of the car easily due to permanent shoulder issues caused in boating accidents over the years and my wife has arthritis so it had to go and I believe it is now in Germany

To replace the GT40 and loving proper engines ( it has to be a V8 ) ,the GT40 had just been sold and I was just passing Lindsay Ford which is just round the corner from me in Knock and there sitting in the front of the cars on display was a two year old Mustang GT  in yellow with black stripes ( KARMA )

Test drive straight away and bought on the spot , unfortunately without discussing this with my wife – bad idea as you can imagine

This the sprint of last year at Kirkistown leading the Demo lap with the MSA Steward Nigel in the passengers seat

People ask what is the significance of all my cars having the permanent no.8

My brother Ian had this as his racing number when he was killed so this is my memorium to him

I don’t know whether I will compete in this car  , its  over 2000 kgs , puts out 435hp and as I am fast approaching my 75th birthday maybe officiating would be more sensible

Hope to see you all at our events in the near future

Leslie King


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