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Last Updated: Monday, 24 April 2006, 15:10 GMT 16:10 UK
New start for Coulthard fanatics
By Giancarlo Rinaldi
BBC Scotland news website
South of Scotland reporter

Wendy McKenzie
It was a great Imola grand prix for Wendy McKenzie despite the result
It was a special date for David Coulthard supporters in his home village of Twynholm on 23 April.

The San Marino grand prix signalled the start of a series of special Sundays at the museum dedicated to the Scottish Formula One racing driver.

This season the museum is going to open seven days a week to let fans glimpse the story of his career so far.

Racedays themselves are a chance to gather and cheer on the Stewartry driver and his Red Bull team.

The moment you step through the door at the Pit Stop Diner and Museum you have no doubt about who is their number one.

Cars from every period of Coulthard's career pack the exhibition area, trophies line the walls and merchandise fills any remaining space.

Twynholm
The quiet streets of Twynholm where Coulthard honed his skills

So it was my mistake when asked what team I supported to utter the most unacceptable F word in these surroundings - Ferrari.

The music stopped, the conversation died and the Red Bull baseball caps all turned in my direction.

"This is a Ferrari free zone," said one of the Coulthard clan.

To get an idea of the way these people feel about their hero you only have to talk to Wendy McKenzie for more than a couple of minutes.

She gave up her job with the local paper to come and run the museum full-time.

She dresses top-to-toe in Coulthard attire and every points finish he can manage is celebrated like the arrival of a child.

Even a disappointing race for Coulthard, such as the Imola event ultimately was, still provokes a party atmosphere.

The biggest cheer of the afternoon was probably reserved for a pit lane disaster for Jenson Button.

Around these parts they don't take kindly to other British drivers stealing their boy's limelight.

So when Button took a crack on the head with a stop-go sign it prompted great hilarity.

Cart
It all began for the Stewartry racer in a cart like this

As soon as Coulthard retired, attentions turned to the only other pressing matter of the day - cheering on anyone but Michael Schumacher.

An engine explosion, tyre blowout, minor crash (race-ending but not life-threatening) or disqualification were all invoked at one time or another.

All to no avail, however, as Schumi held off Fernando Alonso to take the chequered flag long after Coulthard had headed back to his motor home.

At this stage the sensible man would have made his excuses, looked for a side-door and sneaked off home to celebrate.

Joining in the Italian national anthem was probably not my smartest move.

By that stage, however, the museum was in celebratory mood.

In Twynholm they never let the result get in the way of a party.


SEE ALSO:
Coulthard blasts Montoya rumours
31 Mar 06 |  Formula One
Coulthard admits Red Bull worries
10 Mar 06 |  Formula One
David Coulthard Q&A
07 Mar 06 |  Formula One


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