Even with lots of work still do be done this list have reached a state
where it must be considered one of the most complete and accurate ever assembled on
the subject. This has only been possible due to the tremendous help from people
all over the world, each of them experts of their local drivers and events.
Short biographies of drivers with BLUE background, will come up in due time.
If you have any information about any driver with GREEN background, please
Cabantous - SEE: Giraud-Cabantous
Giosue' Calamai (I) |
11 Jun 1911 - 2002
Born at Prato, Firenze (Florence) in 1911. Unlike clamed here earlier he was NOT related to actress Clara Calamai-
A good amateur driving good Alfa Romeos,
he was a winner in hillclimbs in the late 1930s.
Died at Firenze in 2002.
Jean Calcianu (RO)
1893 - ?
Cavaliere Giuseppe Campari (I)
8 June 1892 - 10 Sep 1933
Giuseppe Campari raced for Alfa Romeo for 20 years. He was a talented and loved driver by his team mates and the spectators
alike. One could hardly find a man who looked less like a racing driver than Campari. He weighted over 100 kg and his big enjoyments in life
except for racing was good food and Grand Opera. He was married to the well known singer Lina Cavallero and he had sung professionally himself
at the Donizetti theater at Bergamo. It was not uncommon for him to give samples of his own fine baritone voice by singing an aria to his fellow
drivers. Campari had a very dark skin and was hairy all over. The fans used to call him "Il Negher".
Campari was born in Fanfulla near Milan, on 8 June 1892. He joined the ALFA company in his teens and soon became a test driver. His
first competition was the 1913 Parma-Poggio di Berceto hill-climbing event. In 1914 he became the sensation of the Targa Florio, finishing
fourth. His first post-war race was again the Targa Florio but this time he was unplaced. In 1920 Campari took his and Alfa Romeo's first
racing victory by winning the Circuit of Mugello in a 40/60. He also won numerous hill climbs that year. He then repeated his victory at
Mugello the next year and was third at Targa Florio.
It was the P2 car constructed by Vittorio Jano that really made Campari famous. He took the car to its first victory at the 1924 French GP
at Lyon. Campari was on his way to victory in the 1925 French GP when he retired after learning of the death of Ascari. That year he was
second at the Monza and Milan GPs. After Alfa Romeo withdrew from GP racing Campari continued to drive their cars as an independent. He
won the 1927, 1928 and 1931 Coppa Acerbo and proved victorious in both the 1928 and 1929 Mille Miglia races together with Guido Ramponi.
Campari became Italian champion in both 1928 and 1929.
On 1 December 1929 when Scuderia Ferrari was formed, Enzo Ferrari had already secured Campari as the first driver for the team. Campari
continued racing for Ferrari and Alfa Corse. In 1931 Campari raced the new P3 cars at the Italian Grand Prix. After that
Archangeli had a fatal crash during practice, the team planned to withdraw but were ordered by Mussolini to "race and win for Italy".
Campari raced - and won!
1932 wasn't a good year for Campari. With Nuvolari, Caracciola and Borzacchini in the team he found himself relegated to fourth driver
and at the beginning of 1933 he went over to Maserati and was victorious at the French Grand Prix.
Campari decided to leave motor racing and concentrate all his efforts on opera instead.
He was back in an Alfa to start his last race in front of his home crowd at the Monza GP.
He lost control on the first lap and the car went over the embankment.
After having survived 20 years of racing without any major injuries Campari was crushed underneath his inverted car and died instantly.
Ernesto Campeotto (I/DK) |
Ernesto's ansestors had emigrated from Sweden to Italy and changed names from Larsson to Campiotto.
Ernesto moved to Denmark in 1928 and worked as manager for Fiat. He took part at the 1932 Swedish Winter GP
but retired after ditching his Fiat. In the early 1960s Ernesto moved back to Italy where he bought a wineyard near Turin.
His son Dario, an actor and singer, would represent Denmark in the 1961 European Song Contest.
Saverio Candrilli (I) |
Sicilian from Palermo.
José Antonio Canziani (RA) |
3 Jul 1911
From Ciudad de Buenos Aires.
Renato Cappagli (I)
11 Sep 1904 - 6 Feb 1989
Cappagli was born at Volterra in Tuscany in 1904. After doing his military service he worked for several years at Lancia in Turin as a test driver.
He won the "Coppa Lando Ferretti" on the Pontedera circuit with an Lancia Lambda, possiblty in 1924 and did some some motorcycle racing with an Indian Scout.
In the early 1930's his homesickness brought him back to Cecina where he found work as a chauffeur to a rich local businessman who owned a Bugatti and gave Cappagli
permission to lend the car for some races. After the war Cappagli worked as mechanic until the late 80's. He died at Cecina in 1989.
When my grandfather talked about "his" Bugatti his eyes were filled with
joy and I can still hear him saying "those were cars" or "a great sound,
impossible to hear from today's cars".
(Info supplied by Carlo Cappagli)
Rudolf Caracciola (D/CH)
30 Jan 1901 - 28 Sep 1959
Often believed to be an Italian, this German driver became famous overnight, when he in 1926 as a privateer, won
the first German Grand Prix, raced in horrendous conditions. To the Germans he became the Regenmeister and
his smooth driving and ability to shine in rainy conditions would be his mark throughout his career.
In 1931, he won the Mille Miglia in a Mercedes-Benz SSKL as the first non-Italian ever. After Mercedes retired from
racing, Caracciola joined Alfa Romeo for 1932 before founding Scuderia CC together with Chiron in 1933.
His career was interrupted by a crash in Monaco 1933, which left him limping with leg wounds that never
were properly healed. Being out of action for a year, tragedy stuck again as his wife Charly was killed in
a avalanche. Suffering from constant pain, Caracciola made a comeback in 1934 to force himself back to a position
as head driver for Mercedes, clinching three of the five pre-war championships. The secret of Caracciola's
success was that he kept his calm during the races. Another of Caracciola's triumph cards then was the
uniquely good relationship between him and the Mercedes team manager Neubauer, comparable to the Clark-Chapman
dominance in the 60s. By the late 30s, Caracciola had lost some of his edge. He had to work hard to beat a new
generation of GP drivers and started making mistakes.
Click here for full biography.
Helmer Carlsson-Alsed (S)
18 Dec 1909 - 17 Jun 2005
One of the top Nordic pre war drivers, Carlsson raced in GPs and ice races in Sweden
and Finland with good results and was expecially showed his abilities in local hill climbs.
Son of a farmer, Helmer Carlsson was born in Sunnerskog, Alseda near Vetlanda in SE Sweden.
In the late 30 he changed his name to Alsed. Technical minded, Helmer started working in his
brother Bertil's workshop at an age of 15. Later Bertil represented FIAT in Sweden.
After moving to Västerås in 1927, Helmer started
racing in 1933 with a De Soto. DNF at the 1933 Swedish GP. Changed to Ford for 1934.
The same year the "Västerås Racer Kompani" was founded, a racing team with Bertil as organizer and
Helmer, theWesterblom brothers and
Karl Rolander as drivers . The team raced Amilcar, Ford and Anzani.
In 1935 a ex-Björnstad Bugatti T35C was added to the car park and in 1936 also Widengren's monoposto Monza.
After having decided to get married Helmer retired from GP racing after the 1938 season
but continued rallying and hill climbing. Raced a Fiat 508c after the war
before definitely retiring in the late 40s.
(Info supplied by Bengt Alsed)
Giacomo Carpegna (I) |
From Canale d'Alba
Carré - SEE: "Renaldi"
René Auguste Joseph Carrière (F)
10 Mar 1911 - 22 Mar 1982
French driverfrom Marseille. Started off as rally driver with some good results including 6th in the 1936 Monte Carlo Rally in a
Matford (Ford V8 built in France by Emile Mathis). In 1934 he was 12th and 1935 7th at Le Mans 24 h with a Riley. In 1936 he started driving for the works
Delahaye team of Lucy O´Reilly-Schell. He drove two years for the team, with some 3rd and 4th places
in sportscar events but without the big success in major events. So at the end of
1937 the support of Lucy O´Reilly-Schell stopped, and Carrière instead became
works Talbot Darracq driver in 1938-39. The results were disappointing, and so he finished his career.
Carlo Castelbarco (I) |
25 Mar 1911 - 14 May 1988
Born at Muilano in 1911 and died in Milano in 1988.
Also see: Luigi Castelbarco
Gaetano Castellano di Paternò (I) |
di Castro - SEE: Di Castro
Jean/Joseph/Giuseppe "Papa" Cattaneo (I/F)
Italian born engineer with French nationality. He effectively owned since the
late twenties and in partnership with someone
called Duval a very reputed garage in Saint-Cloud, a rich Paris suburb.
He was specialized in luxury cars, before the war: Bugatti (he was the agent),
Hispano-Suiza, Alfa-Romeo, Bentley and Stutz and after the war Ferrari. He
had a personnal relationship whith Enzo Ferrari since the Alfa days
and close friend of Luigi Chinetti. He maintained
the Ferraris for people like Prince Bertil of Sweden, Prince Ali Khan, Roberto
Rossellini, Porfirio Rubirosa etc. He also tuned racing Ferraris for top French drivers and the
garage whas the operating base of Chinetti's NART when racing in Europe.
Gordini spent a few years as employee when he arrived in
France (in fact was forced to stay for debt)
"Papa" Cattaneo actively raced before the war. He was co-driver for Edouard Brisson in a Stutz at Le Mans 1931 and 1932 and
with Nicholas of Romania in a Dusenberg in 1933 but apart from that he mostly raced Bugatti.
Cattaneo's Bugatti T51 was given to him by Ettore
himself as a gift when he came to Molsheim to take delivery of Esder's
Royale. Bugatti took Cattaneo to the racing department and offered him one
of the factory cars with a Targa Florio pedigree. Talk about souvenir!!
Cattaneo stopped racing when he had a awful crash at the Nancy hillclimb in Château-Thierry in
1935 with his T51 when a fence broke and five childeren and an adult where killed.
"Papa" Cattaneo died in the 1960s and his garage was bought by Pozzi, the French Ferrari importer.
Not to be confused with a driver named Guido Cattaneo,
Italian top class motorboat racer from the Isotta Fraschini Cattaneo family.
Drove a Talbot in the 1937 Mille Miglia.
(Info supplied by Jean Cavaud / Alessandro Silva / Stephen Dean)
Robert Cazaux (F)|
31 Jan 1906 -16 Jun 1935
Fatal crash at Course de côte de Sézanne with a Bugatti T51.
Roger Césure (F) |
17 Sep 1905 - ca 1963
From Paris. He had been a pre-war independent Bugatti driver and became one of the many builders of SIMCA
8 Spl. He was assistant treasurer of AGACI in 1946/47.
(Info supplied by Alessandro Silva)
Eugène Marius Chaboud (F)
12 Apr 1907 - 28 Dec 1983
Born 1907 in Lyon Chaboud started racing in 1936 with his friend Jean Trémoulet driving Delahayes. They were the winners of the 1938 Le Mans 24h race.
Chaboud also started at the French GP 1938 with the infamous SEFAC. After the war he continued recing Delahayes and Talbots
for Ecurie France in 1947, winning at Marseilles and Perpignan. In 1948 he created Ecurie Leutitia, still racing Delahayes.
He took part in the 1950 Belgian GP in a Lago-Talbot and then took over Étancelin's Talbot -Lago at the French GP finishing 5th to score a single
World Championship point for a shared result. he also took part in the 1951 French Grand Prix. Chaboud retired in 1952 after a crash at Le Mans. He died at Montfermeil in 1983.
Ermanno Checcacci ( ) |
Not in the official list of licensed Italian racing drivers.
Francis "Steve" Chiappini (ZA)
1908 - 1976
Chiappini was a consistent performer in South African sand races, trails and hill climbs.
While visiting England in 1937 he became good friend with Pat Fairfield and Cyril Paul and also got to know Piero Taruffi.
During the 1937-38 South African international race series Taruffi would drive Chiappini around the Pollsmoor Cape Town and East London circuits in a Lancia,
recommending cut-off points and racing lines.
While in England Chiappini also bought an Maserati, probably Tipo 26 Sport #2516 Registation ELM 510. The engine had been enlaged by Dickie Oates to over 2.8 litre and Oates
had raced the car at Brooklands in 1936 before selling it as an "ex-Eyston/Cumming" car. Before delivery the chassis was shorten by some 150mm to match the length of a
a Maserati 8C. The four seater body was replaced by modern sleeky single-seater body designed by Bertelli. Chiappini raced the car in England and later in
South Africa. After a major engine failure the straight-8 cylinder was replaced by a Chevrolet engine while the original engine was sold to to a gentlemen who
planned to repair it for use in a motor boat.
Chiappini then drove Maserati Tipo 26 #2516 to finish third in the South African
Grand Prix at East London and also competed with it in Cape Trials and hill-climbs, winning several Cape Town and national events. In a letter to
Ken Stewart in 1964 Chiappini wrote: "The Big Mas was a very difficult car to handle, the road-holding was really tricky. It was a car which went
After the war Chiappini was actively involved in motor racing administration, apart from running a garage in Cape Town.
If anyone has further/more accurate information, please contact Charles Chiappini
who is trying to gather more info on his father.
Luigi Chinetti (I/USA)
17 Jul 1901 - 17 Aug 1994
Born in Milan, Chinetti started to work as a mechanic for Alfa Romeo in 1917. With the rise of fascism in Italy,
Chinetti moved to France, where he became Alfa Romeo salesman in Paris and sports car driver,
He won the Le Mans both in 1932 and 1934. Chinetti had also a eye for new driving talents and helped Moll to find his way
to the Ferrari team. He became involved with the Schell's, ending up as team manager for Ecurie Bleue. Chinetti went with Dreyfus to USA
for the 1940 Indy 500 and remained in USA during the war, working under Italian Alfred Momo. /
In 1946 Chinetti went back to Italy and
with his French and American connections became salesman for the first Ferrari cars in 1948. In 1949 he won at Le Mans
24 h race for the third time and Spa 24 h race for the second time, making Ferrari famous as sports cars builders.
After Chinetti ended his career as driver in the 50s he formed the North American Racing team. The team won Le Mans in
1965 amd was also involved in F1 representing Ferrari in a few races. Chinetti's hunt for driving talents continued,
and he helped among others Phil Hill, Ginther, Gurney and Pedro & Ricardo Rodriguez with their careers.
(Info supplied by Hugh Calibani.)
Mario Pedro Chiozza (RA) |
Raced an interesting Mercury Special bimotore.
Thomas Graves "Tommy" Clarke D.S.C. (GB) |
19 Aug 1911 - 14 Feb 1969
1936: 11* Donington GP
Born in Allerton, Liverpool 1911.
Died 1969 in Antigua
Major Frederick Edward "Freddie" Clifford (GB) |
15 Jul 1906 - 19 Oct 1961
Born in Ashe, Hampshire 1906.
Died in Oxford 1961.
John Rhodes Cobb (GB)
2 Dec 1899 - 29 Sep 1952
Born at Hackridge/Esher? Surrey 1899 Cobb lived in his youth near the Brooklands Track getting fashinated in
fast and powerful cars. Educated at Eton and Trinity Cobb made his money as a fur broker. He won his first race in 1925 in an old 10 litre Fiat.
Next year he raced Parry Thomas' "Babs" in 1926. Cobbs was interested in speed records and in 1928 he bought a 10½ litre Delage racing it until
1933 bettering the Brooklands speed records on
three occations. While Cobb raced all kinds of cars including riley, Alfa Romeo and Talbot his most famous car was the big Napier Railton built for him by
Thomson & Taylor. In 1935 he sat the all time Brooklands record of 151.97 mph (24.51 km/h).
In 1938 Cobb went for the land speed record, taking it at Bonneville with the 26.9 litre Railton Mobil Special. He bettered the record in 1939 and again in
1947 becoming the first man to exceed 400 mph.
His next and last project was to challenge the water speed record. Cobb lost his life at Loch Ness in 1952 when his jet engined "Crusader" disintegrated.
Colegrave - SEE: Manby-Colegrave
Gianfranco "Franco" Alessandro Maria Comotti (I)
24 Jul 1906 - 10 May 1963
Comotti was born in Brescia, but lived in Bergamo.
He was basically an amateur driver - in attitude if not effectively - and also worked in the oil business for
all his life. He was neither particularly fast nor consistent, but he was apparently a very good tester.
At an age of 22 he appeared at the 1928 European GP at Monza, in one of Scuderia Materassi’s Talbots. Then he disappeared
from the ceane until 1931 when he won the cyclecar race at the Circuito di Alessandria in a Salmson.
He then brought an Alfa Romeo Monza sports car to Scuderia Ferrari in Modena for servicing, becoming an
official driver for the team in 1932. Meanwhile he married Anna Maria Peduzzi, a tall and handsome lady driver,
one of the best Italian ever, whose career lasted even longer than her husband’s.
Comotti stayed with Ferrari until the end of 1935, winning at the 1934 Comminges GP.
Comotti was a cosmopolitan, sincerely anti-fascist man and moved to Paris in 1936. Tony Lago signed him
in 1937 as test driver for cars destined to clients and as a reserve
driver for the racing team. He took a victory that year at the RAC TT. However he had to leave Lago and joined the
Schells’ Ecurie Bleue racing a Delahaye. Sacked by the team in favour of "Raph", he reappeared in the 1940 Mille Miglia
in a Watney’s Delage.
During the war he was infiltrated as an informer in the German occupied part
of Italy. He was discovered and sentenced to death, but was saved by the interceding
of an Italian "collaborator". After the war he returned to France and became be tester of the new Lago-Talbot T26C.
A businessman of Italian origin, named Peinetti, bought chassis 110004 for Comotti, with which he raced in 1948, but
the following year when Peinetti moved to Argentina taking the car with him. 1950 saw Comotti as tester and driver
of the never ready Milan Maseratis. At the twilight of his career he drove sporadically the old
Ferraris F2 for Scuderia Marzotto. His last appointment in the oil
business was as BP representative for North Africa and the Mediterranean. He died in 1963.
(Info supplied by Alessandro Silva)
Adrian Malcolm Conan-Doyle (GB)
19 Nov 1910 - 3 Jun 1970
Born in Crowborough as the youngest son of famous author Arthur Conan Doyle.
Big-game hunter, explorer, and also tried some racing.
Handled his fathers literary estate and also wrote some own additional Sherlock Holmes stories
in the 1950s. Died in Geneva in 1970.
Carlo Alberto "Caberto" Conelli, Conte de Prosperis (I) |
26/28 Aug 1889 - 25 Aug 1974
Born in Belgirate, Piedmont. Won 1920 at Aosta-Gran San Bernardo. He raced many different cars, and was second at the 1927 Targa Florio.
In 1931 he drove for Bugatti and teamed up with "Williams" for the championship. His brother Francesco,
who was not as fast, raced sporadically and won in 1922 at Parma-Berceto.
Ian Ferguson Connell (GB)
15 Oct 1913 - 1 Mar 2003
Born in Singapore, Connell was another Cambridge student contemporary with Seaman and
Straight. Member of the University Auto Club.
Together with Peter Monkhouse Connell started the Monaco Motor and Engineering Co. Ltd. at Watford
in 1935 for car sales and maintenance. He started racing in an Austin, his first start being the 1934 Mountain race at
Brooklands. He took the same year a class victory with a Singer. After having raced Vale Special and Alfa Romeo "Monza"
Connell bought Dr. Benjafield's ERA (R6B) and raced it during the 1937 and 1938 seasons, including the 1938 Donington GP,
before selling the ERA and turning to sports car racing with a Darracq. In 1939 he was 8th at the Le Mans
24h race in Rob Walker's Delahaye. During the war Connell served as officer in charge of a workshop at the British 7th Armoured Div.
(the famous Desert Rats). After the war Connell continued racing for some years while working for several companies
as a Chartered Secretary before ending up as Chief Accountant of Decca Radio and Television.
Died in Chippenham, Wiltshire 2003.
(A great thanks to Ian Connell for providing information about himself.)
Giorgio Conter (I) |
Amateur driver and barrister from Torino (Turin).
Humphrey Wyndham Cook (GB)
16 Mar 1893 - 3 Aug 1978
Born in Chelsea, London 1893.
The quite but entusiastic Cook started racing in 1914. Raced Vauxhalls in the early 1920's and Bugattis in the late 20's, mostly at Brooklands.
Raced Aston Martin in 1931. Donated £75000 to set up the ERA concern and later raced some races with the ERA. Retired from racing 1937.
Died in Westminster, London.
Renato Corinaldi (I) |
Firenze, Padova 28 Dec 1908 - 4 Oct 1967
Born at Padua in 1908. Lived in Florence. Died at Milan in 1967.
Alexander James "Alastair" Cormack (GB)
7 May 1907 - 4 Oct 1993
Born in Edinburgh, Scotland, a member of the family which owned the Cormack Shipping Line, a company that traded mainly with
the Baltic ports. Cormack’s motor racing career started in 1933 on Kirkcaldy sands, in 1934 he entered the Kausen
hillclimb in his 1100cc supercharged Alta, finishing third in the 1100cc class. In 1935 he raced on many circuits
including Dieppe and became a factory Alta driver in 1936, a highlight of the season being the Prince Ranier Cup at
Monaco After the war Cormack became involved in the commercial aviation industry and the garage trade, he was
President of the Scottish Motor Trade Association, and gifted the Commer chassis for the famous Ecurie Ecosse
transporter. Died 1993 in Edinburgh.
(Info supplied by Ken Jones)
Irineu Meyer Corréa da Silva (BR)
24 Jan 1900 - 2 Jun 1935
Winner of the 1934 Rio GP Corréa had a fatal crash at the 1935 Rio GP at Gávea at an age of 35. Correa's car fell down the
canal at Visconde de Albuquerque street on the first lap of the race.
William Edward "Billy" Cotton (GB)
6/27? May 1899 - 25 Mar 1969
Born in Westminster, London, Billy Cotton is more famous as band leader than as a racing driver.
He hosted a hugely popular BBC radio and TV show "The Billy Cotton Band Show"
for much of the fifties/sixties. His son, who is known as "Bill" was at
one time the controller of BBC 1 TV channel.
Cotton bought and raced the ex Seaman ERA-B in 1937.
He died in 1969 in Wembley, England, while watching a boxing match, seven years after suffering a stroke.
Petre G. Cristea (RO)
31 Jan 1909 - 6 Jul 1995
Considered to be Romania's best ever racing driver.
Started racing in 1930. Winner of the 1936 Monte Carlo Rally together with motorcycle champion Zamfirescu
in a specially rebuilt Ford V8.
Entered mostly sports car races and hill climbs with a BMW 328. Won a
sports car event at Nürburgring in 1939 against pretty respectable opposition.
In January 1969, Petre Cristea (following the footsteps of Paul Pietsch)
founded the "Autoturism" magazine. Owned by the Romanian Auto Club (ACR),
today it is the most popular auto magazine in Romania.
Cristea also wrote some technical books, including a volume about driving racing cars: Cum
devii campion (How to become a champion).
(Info supplied by Mihai Dumitru)
Angus Humphrey Cuddon-Fletcher (GB) |
3 Jul 1909 - 1973/74?
Born in Dunans, Argyll,
Cuddon-Fletcher was a designer engineer. Among other things he worked on a rotary engine,
which he sadly failed to patent. He took part in racing before the Second World War, racing MGs
at Donington, Crystal Palace & Brooklands. There was at some stage a kind of partnership with Reg Parnell.
He emigrated to the United States in December 1965 and remained in the field of (Marine) engineering.
Died in in Wisconsin in the 1970s.
(Info supplied by Susan Cuddon-Fletcher)
Emile Cuvelier (B) |
After the war briefly president of the club "CMA Beaumont-Chimay".
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© 2016 Leif Snellman - Last updated: 11.12.2016