Exclusive: TG joins Lotus pit crew in Hockenheim

Over the next few days TopGear will be getting closer to F1 than ever before. The guys at Lotus have rather bravely agreed to let staffer Dan Read (that’s me) join the team for the German GP as a sort of guest mechanic.

Unfortunately, they’ve no idea it once took me two days to change a spark plug, and that oil gives me a pink and blobby rash.

Over the first half of this season, we’ve followed the team around the world, sneaking up from behind oil cans and taking behind-the-scenes pics from life on the road with Lotus. We helped make a bit of the car back on the first day of construction and since then we’ve felt like it’s partly ours, even if our bit was a tiny – but probably vital – piece of carbon fibre.

So it seems right that we should chip in again by lending the team a hand in Germany. Even if it’s a slightly useless hand. But I’ve promised not to screw up and, if I don’t confuse my spanners with my nuts, I might even get to help with a real live racing pit stop. Maybe.

In the meantime I’ll be scrubbing wheels, making tea, sweeping the floor, making tea, helping the composite guys with the bodywork and making tea.

I’ll be sending back live reports from the circuit over the weekend, taking more of those sneaky pics and nosing around the paddock to see what else I can find.

Check back tomorrow to see how I got on in pit stop practice. Let me know if you’ve got any questions for the team. Oh, and wish me luck…

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