Back in the late 1960s, the commercial pace of motor racing was increasing. More major sponsors appeared on the F1 scene including tobacco giant Marlboro and Yardley cosmetics, and this interest had developed into a veritable flood by the time Team Lotus changed its Gold Leaf livery to the black and gold of the John Player Special cigarette brand. At the time, Johnny Tipler was working for the Stanbury Foley Organisation, a motor racing promotions hothouse based in Stratford, East London. Its major client was John Player & Son, and the livery of the Lotus 72 in its JPS guise was designed largely by SFO partner Barry Foley. In 1972 the black-and-gold livery also extended to the Team Lotus racing car transporters and JPS hospitality vehicles.
This book, Black & Gold, has been a gleam in publisher William Taylor’s eye for a long time. Probably eight years have elapsed since he and Johnny Tipler first talked about producing it. During that time Tipler spoke with the key figures from the JPS era – those who are still with us at any rate – while Taylor accumulated images of the period as well as amassing examples of John Player Special paraphernalia.