UPDATE: TopGear does an actual F1 pit stop

Today, I was given a job in a real, live, F1 pitstop. The days of graft paid off and the lads at Lotus gave me a set of overalls, a space-age helmet, and a fire extinguisher.

I was told to get right behind the car and look for flames, and if I saw so much as a flicker, to squeeze the trigger and shower it with oxygen-sapping CO2.

I’ve never used a fire extinguisher in my life, and the nearest I’ve come to a fire is by my kitchen hob. But when the call came over the radio for Heikki to pit, none of this mattered.

I’ve been joking over the weekend about drivers taking out their own men, and to those men, I apologise. Because when that car angles itself towards you at 100kph everything tells you to hurl yourself about 20 feet backwards.

I flinched, and Heikki’s sharp-edged front wing passed a metre from my ankles. Before I could even shift to my position beside the rear jack man, the boys had the tyres off.

As I tiptoed into place, the new ones were on. And by the time I remembered to spot flames, he was gone, with about 40 degrees of drift angle, cooly collected before wiping out the Virgin crew next door.

I could smell the hot rubber from the tyres. I could feel the exhaust heat on my neck. And I can tell you that no matter how many times you watch a pit stop, the speed at which these guys work is inconceivable to mortals in this dimension.

As you’ve probably seen, the race didn’t end well for Lotus. And after three days of complete immersion in the team – which is crammed with warm-hearted blokes from management to tyre techs – that was gutting.

Over the next few days I’ll post more behind-the-scenes pics and answers to your questions. Thanks for following. And thanks to the people at Lotus, for letting us into their marvellous world.

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Well done, so maybe on the wheels next time? ;)

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What about doing a post on the actual GP instead of this?
Just askin’

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how many Malaysians in the team? and Brits?

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Keep up the good work guys. love the show

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Well done to Dan,he really got into the job with all his heart…and sweat!!!,really pleased he had a good time with the team,We better watch out for our jobs!!!
Barry and Jim,Lotus tyre techs

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What was the consensus in the lotus garage over the team orders?

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In all fairness to dan, he was a cracking tyre man and I have to agree with barry and jim! they should wory about their jobs (jim more than barry, anyone can moan, smoke and drink tea!)

I personally think the article should focus on how great the Bridgestone support is!!

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You Lucky Lucky man you….

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it is Malaysia F1 Team
so MALAYSIA BOLEH

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MALAYSIA PAYAH…..malaysia sucker

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Great job Dan, your behind the scene account of the entire GP weekend was absolutely fantastic!!

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Thanks, Lotus! Let’s hope some other teams take a tip from you, and ‘open up’ a bit to the public! :)

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There are a couple of teams that should think about swapping you out for their current driver. :)

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wow im impressed that they managed to do a pitstop on a great F1 car

as long as they didnt catch a carwash on fire along the way or run out of fuel lol

keep up the work guys your great and the show you done in Basingstoke with the corvette and the ford fiesta was great to went into the town that day and wondered what went on lol

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Do you get to talk to the drivers?

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