Snapshot, 1970: A gentleman on land and in the air

He was the first racing driver to win the Indianapolis 500, the 24 Hours of Le Mans and the Formula 1 World Championship. But Graham Hill wanted to go higher...

Both on and off the racetrack, he was an English gentleman through and through. It is no wonder that Graham Hill, with his pencil moustache and long, carefully combed-back hair, was soon discovered by Hollywood: John Frankenheimer cast the F1 World Champion in 1966 for his film Grand Prix. Nine years later, he starred in the action extravaganza Caravan to Vaccarès, as a helicopter pilot in a film based loosely on the novel of the same name, by Alistair MacLean. As planned, the film appearances raised Graham Hill's profile even higher; in this photo from 1970, he poses patiently before his Lotus Elan and Piper Aztec, an aircraft he piloted himself. His luck in aviation, however, ran out – on a foggy November night in 1975, he missed the runway during a landing in southern England. Along with four Embassy Hill team members, Great Britain lost one of its greatest racing legends.

Photo: Tony Evans/Getty Images