ARRIVING home after a week in Majorca Jimmy Kilday was probably looking forward to a cup of tea and a night back in his own bed.
So imagine the 70-year-old’s shock when he was greeted at Edinburgh Airport international arrivals with the news he had won the sports car of every mans’ dreams.
The top-of-the-range red Jaguar F Type coupé, worth more than £85,000, was waiting for delighted Jimmy as a result of a competition he entered as he waited to board his flight to Majorca on April 11. His face crumpling into delight at the news, he said: “It’s absolutely fantastic, it’s a beautiful motor and I’m feeling absolutely brilliant.”
While waiting in the departure lounge the businessman took part in a Spot the Ball competition organised by Best of the Best. Entrants pay anything between £3 and £22 for each entry and if they are the closest to the correct spot, which is chosen by a panel of independent judges, they win the car - in this case a Jaguar.
The company, founded by Will Hindmarch in 1999, gives away a dream car every fortnight and has already handed over the keys to more than £15 million pounds-worth of supercars.
“It takes a long time to persuade some of our winners that they’ve actually won, and the look on their faces is priceless,” Mr Hindmarch explained. “It’s only when they physically see the car that they really get excited. Just knowing how much it means to people is one of the reasons we love what we do. It’s life-changing in so many ways.
“All their reactions differ to some degree but they are all incredibly excited and at some stage I always get enveloped in a big old bear hug!”
And that was no different to Mr Kilday’s reaction when he was greeted by Mr Hindmarch holding up a board bearing his name in the arrivals lounge.
He had been on a week-long holiday with his wife, Dorothy, 68, and 10-year-old grandson, James, and said he could not believe he’d won.
“I buy a ticket when I’m passing through because it’s a bit of fun,” he explained.
“I’m in shock – it’s like winning the lottery!” Mrs Kilday - the West Calder businessman’s wife of 47 years – said the news was “a total surprise” .
However she has revealed she probably won’t drive the Jaguar, fearing its five-litre V8 engine, capable of 0-60 in four seconds, may be a tad too powerful for her. Grandson James, however, was the first in line to ask to be taken for a spin in it.
The Parkhead Primary School pupil said: “It’s awesome – I’m going to take a few photos and print them off to show my friends at school.
“My grandad will be zooming up and down the street and making everyone in West Calder jealous.”
Mr Kilday was presented with the demo sports car by the regional managing director of Pentland Jaguar, Stuart Miller, who will now provide him with his own brand new model in a colour of his choice.
He said: “I’ve worked for the company for nearly 40 years and something like this has certainly never happened.
“When we saw the names we knew they were customers of ours because they’ve bought a Land Rover Discovery from us, so they have good taste in cars but you could not have written a film about this.”
Stuart Young, Press Officer at Edinburgh Airport, said: “I’m delighted for Mr Kilday on winning the Jaguar.
“It’s something we are all incredibly jealous of . . . we hope he enjoys it.”