Aldin LeGrand

Aldin LeGrand

11/2/1924 - 12/11/1988

As a young man, His his first passion was playing a trumpet in a jazz band in San Francisco. However, his promising music career ended with the beginning of World War II. He spent the war in the front lines on the beaches of the pPacific theater. Red stayed in the Marines thru through Korea, leaving the service, with honors, as a drill instructor at Perris Island. He moved to the Los Angeles area and took up roots. Red began studying engineering and starting his family. He and, his wife Delia, raised three sons and a daughter, only his son Robin would later follow his father into the race cars business. While working in the aerospace industry making memory drums, Red was introduced to the fledgling Southern California sports car racing scene. Red, Stuart Dane, and Neil Hillier worked together and thought that racing looked like fun. The Formula Racing Association had a class in which they could race their car, they built around a Renault engine and drive train. This trio made several successful homebuilt cars for this class, and the cars where so good that some customer interest was sparked. Red died in November of 1988 and LeGrand Racecars was continued by his son, Robin. Most of their effort was put into the production of the Mk 25s, and the increasing business of the vintage restoration. Robin, with the help of John Griffith and others, produced a new formula car for Bill Huth, owner and operator of the Willow Springs Raceway. An interesting car, the Mk28 had a turbocharged Kawasaki powerplant. The idea was to achieve Formula Atlantic speed with FF budget, and to build a series of these cars for class racing at Willow Springs. One car was built and was getting sorted when the rug got pulled from under the project. This car now sits in the show-room at Willow Springs. Robin, discouraged with he lack of success of this project left the racing business, turning over all the vintage Legrand tooling to the LeGrand Registry. LeGrand Race Cars also was involved in contract work. In the early 70s, George Cheney had Red build for a factory Ford Pinto for the 2.5 liter Trans Am series. It won many races before later retiring to vintage racing Overall, more than two hundred LeGrand racecars were built from 1962- to 1991. Many of these early cars are now restored to their former glory and continue to compete on the vintage circuit.

Leave a comment

Comments