Rob Slotemaker

Rob Slotemaker

13/6/1929 - 16/9/1979

Rob Slotemaker founded and taught at the anti-skid school in Zandvoort and played an important role in the development of Jan Lammers career. He raced for over 25 years in every type of competition until his untimely death in a saloon car race at Zandvoort.

Rob Slotemaker founded and taught at the anti-skid school in Zandvoort. He was Godfather to Jan Lammers, taught him to drive and played an important role in the development of his career.

Rob Slotemaker raced for over 25 years driving almost any kind of car in every type of competition. He drove sports cars and raced at Le Mans five times driving a Triumph TR4S with Les Leston in 1961 and a Triumph Spitfire with David Hobbs in 1964 and 1965. In 1968 and 1969 he drove the lovely Alfa Romeo T33B/2 with Teddy Pilette. He was also one of the drivers in the 1971 Steve mcQueen film, Le Mans.

In touring cars he was Dutch Champion in 1966 and 1967, driving an Alfa Romeo and 1968 he was Champion again driving a Ford Mustang.

He drove rally cars, competing in the Monte Carlo Rally eight times, winning his class in a BMW 2002 in 1966. He also had great success with DAF, who by 1964 had a works team entering rallies with Slotemaker and Claude Laurent. At first, the team ran bog-standard 750s in events such as the Neige et Glace, the Coupe des Alpes and the Corsica rally. In 1966 the they shoehorned the 44's 850cc engine into the Daffodil, leading to yet more under-850cc class wins in the Tour de Corse (11th overall), the Marathon de la Route and the Limousin and Bayonne rallies. As the Variomatic machines were hard to beat on reliability, they entered the 1968 London-Sydney marathon with the simple DAF 55s. Slotemaker and David van Lennep made it all the way to the finish.

In single seaters he helped DAF develop their F3 car. In 1963 DAF's R&D department, led by Henk van Zalinge, had decided to  develop a Variomatic transmission that would handle moore power. Initially using an Alexis chassis with a 110 hp Cosworth BDA engine with new Variomatic transmission installed the car failed to make its debut at Zolder due to fuel feed problems. DAF then entered Rob for the prestigious Monaco F3 race. Slotemaker qualified 11th and finished the race in 7th. A good result for what amounted to a test bed. In 1964 Koch met Jack Brabham and convinced him to help with the development of a pair of Brabham F3 cars with Variomatic transmissions. In August ’65 the first "Brabham-DAF" was entered in the Zandvoort F3 race and Slotemaker ran reliably to the finish in 8th.

Some of the sports cars he drove were the Alfa Romeo 33 and Porsche 908, touring and GT cars like the Opel Commodore, Chevrolet Camaro, Porsche 911 and Alfa Romeo GTA, single seaters like the Brabam-DAF Formula 3 and also rally cars like a BMW 2002, Opel Kadett GTE and the bizarre DAF Daffodil 850cc Proto.

Stolemaker was killed during a race for Chevrolet Camaro's at Zandvoort. He was driving the Group 1B car he usually drove at the Dutch Touring Car Championship.

In the race Michael Strauch's engine blew up and crashed. The race doctor was attending to Strauch when Slotemaker arrived at the scene. He spun on the oil and crashed into the doctor's car, which was parked behind Strauch's Camaro.

The impact broke Slotemaker's neck and he died on the spot. A nurse sitting in the doctors car was also hurt.

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