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Rally Cars: Andrew Cowan's Mitsubishi Collection

Daniel Roeseler, archive
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G Great Britain is the motherland of understatement. Here you wear the mink inside. Show-offs are considered uncool. The unadorned, mild green painted hall in Broadmeadows, around an hour south of the Scottish metropolis of Edinburgh, is a good example of low-key work. Given the rural setting, a stranger would guess that tractors, combines, or other useful agricultural equipment are parked there.

The world's largest collection of rally Mitsubishi

Landlord Andrew Cowan pushes the gate open - and gives a view of the world's largest collection of rally Mitsubishi. Around two dozen competition cars are parked in a row, from the Turbo-Lancer from 1977 to the sweeping Galant, with which Mitsubishi took the first tentative steps in the World Cup in 1988, to the Lancer in all kinds of Evo versions. For those who are not familiar with recent rally history, let me recap: The Mitsubishi team, directed by Andrew Cowan, was the absolute ruler of the world's special stages from the mid to late 1990s. Driver Tommi Mäkinen, a silent Finn with a heavy foot on the gas, took the crown in the drivers' championship four times in a row between 1996 and 1999.

The Mitsubishi Museum is not open to the public

'Andrew spent five years planning the hall,' says Cowan's wife Linda. 'Everything had to be exactly right, right down to the angle of incidence of the light. And it was particularly important to him that the shed cannot be seen from the street.' The Mitsubishi Museum is not open to the public. Cowan only opens the door to good friends. The rally machines that the landlord moved himself in the early years of his driving career are parked in one corner: next to the tiny Hillman Imp is the light blue Hillman Hunter from 1968, with which Cowan won the London - Sydney marathon rally and thus his reputation as excellent long-distance expert.

The golden series for Mitsubishi began when Tommi Mäkinen hired

In 1968 the company occasionally started with three drivers in one car. 'We had to cover enormous distances practically non-stop,' says Cowan. 'From London to Bombay in India, for example, we drove in seven days. How tired do you think you get?' In 1972, Cowan, a childhood friend of the same age Formula 1 star Jim, who died in an accident in 1968, wonClark, the Southern Cross Rally in Australia. 'It was the first ever win for Mitsubishi at an international event.' Cowan remembers his salary very well: 'I was a farmer who made money with his hobby, 5,000 pounds a year. I didn't get rich from rallying. But I didn't have to, because we have in Scotland is a very beautiful farm. We were able to earn our living that way. Only guys like Colin McRae or Tommi Mäkinen earned the big money. ' The golden streak for Mitsubishi began when Tommi Mäkinen hired.

A Mitsubishi Dakar Pajero is still missing in Cowan's collection

In the Finnish farmer, Cowan, the robust Scot, had found his congenial counterpart. He especially likes to tell the following episode about his favorite driver: 'Tommi loved lifting one up after the rally. When Richard Burns, our second driver, complained about the Lancer for a long time, Tommi just hit the table and said: 'Take mine Setup and just drive the fucking car. I don't care what the car is doing. I just get in and drive. '

As for his private museum, Andrew Cowan has only one regret: 'I don't have a single Dakar Pajero.' Then he digs out a few photos: In miserable condition, dirty and oily, a couple of the victorious Dakar four-wheel drive racers are in a shed with a leaky roof somewhere in the French provinces. Cowan would love to give these cars a new home and dignified accommodation. They definitely deserved it.


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