Heinz Melkus was born on 20 April 1928 in Dresden. After the war he worked as a haulage contractor cleaning up the city that was almost totaly destroyed by Allied bombing. he didn't have a licence but with the need for help after the was the police gave him one.
He started racing casually in 1951 at Dresden Hellerau. Over the following years he drove many different cars starting with a converted Volkswagen, a BMW 321 Cabriolet and a Veritas powered by an aircraft engine. He started designing his own racing cars.
He founded the first racing school in the GDR
He went on to build and race a series of single seater and road going sports cars between 1959 and 1986, winning the Cup of Peace and Friendship (Cup for Socialist Countries) in 1963, 1965, 1966 and 1967.
He was the most successful racing driver from the GDR and probably the most popular. He quit racing in 1977.