Kenneth McAlpine Obituary, Death – Kenneth McAlpine was the oldest living individual to have competed at the grand prix level of racing. He passed away very recently at the age of 103. In the 1950s, he was the man responsible for providing the majority of the funding for the Connaught Grand Prix team. He also worked for the family civil engineering company that had been established by his grandfather, founded a prosperous helicopter business.
And was one of the founding fathers of the English wine industry with his vineyard at Lamberhurst in Sussex. Despite this, he was the type of man who kept to himself and rarely sought the spotlight. Kenneth’s father was one of ten children and was one of them. He was born in Cobham, Surrey, into a huge construction firm that had been started by a guy who was known as “Concrete Bob.” Kenneth came into the world in 1920 and almost immediately developed a passion in automobiles and racing.
During World War II, he relocated to the United States and received piloting instruction from the United States Navy. After returning in 1944, he joined the Royal Air Force and worked as a flight instructor. As soon as the war was finished, he wasted no time in purchasing a couple of Maserati 8CMs, which he used to compete in hill-climbing, sprinting, and racing events in 1947 and 1949, earning victories at Prescott, Luton Hoo, and Goodwood. In 1951, he raced a JBS Norton in the 500cc Formula 3 category, but he also began driving a Connaught A1 Formula 2 car in competition that same year.