Born on this day (27th - April)

Rudolf Schoeller

1902 - 1978

Count Carlo Felice Trossi

1908 - 1949

1913 - 1975

Russ Klar

1914 - 2005

Bob Bondurant


Don Horvath

1935 - 1965

Helmut Marko


Yves Courage


Ari Vatanen


Died on this day (27th - April)

1907 - 1949

Herbert Ernest Meyer

1892 - 1962

Gioacchino Colombo

1903 - 1987

Judy Ganley

1939 - 2007

Harry Firth

1918 - 2014

Theo Helfrich
Theo Helfrich
© (c) 'Who is Who' by Steve Small, 2000

13 / 5 / 1913
29 / 4 / 1978
Helfrich contested the 1952, 53 and 54 German Grands Prix. He took second at Le Mans in 1952 with Helmut Niedermayr.

A motor trader from Mannheim in Germany, the balding Helfrich enjoyed considerable success in the early fifties and was one of Germany's best 'lesser-known' drivers.

He took a win at Hockenheim in 1950 driving a Veritas and, over the next year or so, had some excellent results. This brought him to the attention of the works Mecedes-Benz team and an invitation to race one of their three 300SLs with Niedermayr at Le Mans. Together they took a fine second place behind the Riess/Lang sister car.

In 1953 he raced a single-seater Veritas and won the German Formula 2 championship as well as helping to develop the little Borgward sports car. Theo and Gunther Bechem brought the potent little machine into third place overall, and easily won the 750-1500 cc class. Although Helfrich handled Klenk's car in the 1954 German Grand Prix, the rule changes had swept away Formula 2 in favour of the new 2.5-litre F1.

Thus in 1954 Theo purchased an F3 Cooper and proceeded to win in hill-climbs and minor races, taking seven wins in ten outings that year. Perhaps his most notable performance, though, was second to Moss in that year's Eifelrennen on 23rd May. He also took F3 wins at Leipzig, Dresden, Halle Salle and at the Sachsenring.

He continued with the Cooper for two more years, taking two seconds and a third in 1955.

Purchasing a 1500 cc Porsche Spyder, Helfrich raced on for a couple more years, taking fifth place at Rouen in 1956.

© (c) 'Who is Who' by Steve Small, 2000

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