Classic Driver dealer - DK Engineering
For a company synonymous with Ferraris for the past 30 years it may surprise some that the car they will be debuting at this year’s Goodwood Revival has six cylinders not twelve. It’s still highly desirable, just one of the 14 original Lightweight E-Type Jaguars
This particular car is one that privateer Peter Sutcliffe raced successfully worldwide between 1963 and 1965, and then subsequently went on to further successes in the hands of, among others, Richard Bond and Michael McDowell. In the face of serious opposition from Shelby Cobras and Ferrari GTOs it was the most successful E-Type of 1964, winning at Zolder and Monthléry.
In later years, the FIA Appendix K GT was retired to the Walter Hill collection in Florida before passing into the hands of the present owner who will race it in the Royal Automobile Club Tourist Trophy Celebration race at Goodwood paired with the super-quick ALMS driver Michael Vergers.
Visiting DK Engineering the other day to talk to David and Jeremy Cottingham, it soon becomes apparent that the company is not solely about either restoration or car sales; it’s a combination of both (with premier-client race preparation too of course). "The two go together" David explains, "We can give the client a total package of sales and service and we often find a service client will be looking to either buy or sell a car, while a sales customer may have other cars that need work".
David established the company with his wife Kate (hence ‘DK’) in 1976 and he'd already had a strong background of restoration, mainly with Jaguars, with a creditable amateur racing career too - something he maintains today usually with the 1957 Ferrari 500 Testa Rossa, a car that’s been in the family’s ownership for 25 years. In fact David had run the car not only at the Le Mans Legend (historic support race for the main 24 Hours) this year but also at the 40th anniversary of the Griffiths Formula, an earlier British classic racing series in which David had entered from its outset.
Sons Jeremy and James Cottingham are carrying on the family tradition by racing MGBs (one is 2 GLL, the Poole/Enever 1966 Ilford Films 500 car) in FIA historic racing events and both of them work at the Watford premises together with third brother Justin.
DK is a worldwide business with a strong customer base amongst the top-level Ferrari collectors and during our visit the workshop had a fantastic 340 MM ‘Carrera Panamericana’ Coupé, a 212 Inter Coupé, a 250 GT SWB restored for a well-known rock musician as well as a gorgeous red/white nose ‘pontoon’ 250 TR re-creation they have been commissioned to build.
The company employs 12 mechanics, who have either received extensive in-house training or been ex-Ferrari Main Dealer staff skilled in using the latest diagnostic equipment installed at DK. From a Ferrari standpoint, the company can service and maintain cars right up to modern production, and test them on its 800 bhp two-wheel-drive rolling road.
As David Cottingham explains, "It’s an all-round service".
With the gleaming green Lightweight E-Type sitting in the workshop awaiting its final preparation for Goodwood, I asked the inevitable question to David and Jeremy, one that with their combined years of experience of trading and restoring the best cars in the world should provide fascinating answers: "What would be the best car you’d like to own if money were no object?"
"A long-nose D-Type Jaguar" says David, "It’s like a Spitfire".
Jeremy goes for either of two cars, examples of which were just a few feet away, "A Ferrari 250 GT SWB or a Lightweight E-Type".
So now you know...and look out for the E-Type at Goodwood, it should be one of the front-running cars.
Please click HERE to see all DK Engineering's cars for sale in the Classic Driver car datatbase.
For further information on DK Engineering, visit www.dkeng.com.
The Goodwood Revival takes place at the Goodwood circuit from 1 - 3 September 2006. Entry is by advance ticket only. Please click HERE for our extensive preview.
Little Green Street Farm Green St Chorley Wood Hertfordshire WD3 6EA
Tel: +44 (0)1923 287687
Fax: +44 (0)1923 284741
Email: [email protected]
Text - Steve Wakefield
Photos - Classic Driver
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