Born on 11th of March 1885
Died in Reigate, Surrey
Died on 31st of December 1948
Sir Malcolm Campbell was typical of the type of thrill-seeking adventurer that so typified his era. Born as the internal combustion engine started to become mature enough to drive a vehicle he was soon involved with them, on both land and on water.
Born in Chislehurst, Kent in 1885, his father was William Campbell, a Hatton Garden diamond seller. He was educated at the independent Uppingham School.
He was sent to Germany to learn the diamond trade and it was there that his passion for motorbikes and racing was born. Back in England, between 1906-8, he won all three London to Lakes End Trials motorcycle races. In 1910 he turned his attention to racing cars at the famous Brooklands.
He married three times. The first marriage lasted two years. He then married Dorothy Evelyn Whittall in 1920 and his son Donald was born in 1921. A daughter, Jean, followed in 1923. He divorced Dorothy in 1940. He married again in 1945 to Betty Nicory in 1945.
Campbell competed in Grand Prix motor car racing, with victories in the 1927 and 1928 Grand Prix de Boulogne in France driving a Bugatti T39A.
He broke the Land Speed Record for the first time in 1924. His time of 146.16mph at Pendine Sands near Carmarthen Bay was achieved in a 350HP V12 Sunbeam. Campbell broke nine land speed records between 1924 and 1935, with three at Pendine Sands and five at Daytona Beach.
He was the first person to drive an automobile at over 300 miles per hour when he set his final land speed record at the Bonneville Salt Flats on September 3, 1935, with a speed of 301.337 mph. His name, and land speed in general, became synonymous with his car the Bluebird. He used the same name for his boats.
Campbell turned his attention to the water speed record which he set four times. His highest speed was 141.740 mph in the Bluebird K4 on August 19, 1939 on Coniston Water.
He was knighted in 1931. He died of natural causes in 1948 aged 63 years making him one of very few in his sport not to die in a racing accident.
His son Donald died 19 years later in an attempt to break the water speed record
http://www.racingcampbells.com/ A tribute to both Father and Son
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