The son of twenties racer Baron de Tornaco, he was killed in a Ferrari 500 F2 car testing at Modena.
The wealthy son of twenties racer Baron de Tornaco, the young Charles, encouraged by his long-time friend Jacques Swaters, took part in the 1949 Spa 24 Hours with a BMW, and then drove a Veritas in the 1950 event, before helping found Ecurie Belgique.
In truth, he was not a talented driver, but his enthusiasm was such that when the team regrouped as Ecurie Francorchamps in 1952, he remained, racing their Ferrari T500. That year they entered 3 F1 races. He failed to qualify for the Italian Grand Prix, retired from the Dutch GP, but got his best result a 4th at Chimay though he was driving an HWM. In 1953 he did not start the Belgian GP. In testing at Modena, he rolled the teams F2 Ferrari 500, fracturing his skull and breaking his neck.
Scandalously, there was no proper medical assistance present and he died on way to hospital while incredibly he was being transported in an ordinary saloon car.