Today, 20 April, is the birthday of Phil Hill. He was born on this day in 1927 in Miami. He grew up in Santa Monica, California. He went on to be the first American to win the F1 World Drivers Championship. He also won the 24 Hours of Le Mans 3 times.
After racing, he became a great automotive journalist, writing for Road & Track magazine for many years. He also was a well known restorer & collector of classic sporting cars.
He did triple duty in the great racing film Grand Prix. He played American driver Tim Randolph, drove the Ford GT camera car & did the actual on-screen driving for Brian Bedford's character Scott Stoddard.
We lost Phil in 2008. He was one of the major reasons that I became a life long Formula 1 fan. I'm sure it's the same for many other Americans.
Happy birthday, Phil. Thanks for everything.
Here's a 1975 biography of him: