Get on to a winner

Jonathan Holmes, creative director at the new Great Leighs racecourse, takes a punt on the eco friendly Lexus 450h Sport and discovers it's a bit of a dark horse

What do you do for a living?I am creative director at the Great Leighs racecourse, which is situated on the former Essex County Showground between Chelmsford and Braintree. We are currently redeveloping the site as a world class sports and leisure destination for all the family. It is a family business and my responsibility is for all the branding, marketing, website, sponsorship, entertainment and anything creative connected with the racecourse.

How much do you like driving?I drive a lot, back and forth from the racecourse, plus I am a suffering West Ham United supporter and go to a lot of away matches. I can't stand traffic, but I do enjoy driving fast cars. So much so, I booked my driving test before I could drive properly and failed three times.

What do you drive and what would your dream car be?We've always had nice cars in our family. My dad had an old Mercedes SL sports car when I was young and that got me interested. My first car was a Toyota RAV-4, but my favourite car is the Jaguar XK I own at the moment.

So, how would the Lexus 450h suit your current lifestyle?It's not sporty but my next car will probably be a four-door so, the Lexus will be high on my list. Especially with the soaring cost of petrol. It's got acres of room and storage space, the interior is beautifully made, the build quality is superb and it comes very well equipped.

How does this Lexus drive?It's a lovely car to drive. I'm astonished by the smoothness of the Lexus and the fact that it's so powerful yet very economical with it. I thought that with it being a hybrid car it would be very slow, but I'm really impressed with the performance.

So, how do you rate the Lexus 450h?The Lexus looks very impressive, especially in dark colours, and it's grown on me a lot.

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