Race car legend Alain de Cadenet dies at 77

Alain de Cadenet, the racecar driver turned television presenter, has passed away, Auto Week reports

Some outlets have de Cadenet’s age at 76 years old, while others put him at 77. Wikipedia has his age at 76, citing a French article from endurance-info.com

Also unclear is de Cadenet’s cause of death.

At least one outlet, MotorSport, states that de Cadenet’s death followed a long battle with illness. Specifics were not provided, and other outlets have yet to confirm this.

Who was de Cadenet?

Early on in his career, which was from about the 1960s to the 1980s, de Cadenet was a race car driver. He specifically raced sports cars. And, one of the unique things about de Cadenet was that he actually built and raced his own cars.

As a race car driver, he would go on to compete in a number of well-known events, such as Le Mans. His best finish there was third place. It happened in 1976 with his De Cadenet-Lola T380 Ford-Cosworth.

But it is probably de Cadenet’s job as a television presenter that he is most well-known for. That was his post-race car driving career.

De Cadenet presented shows for a number of channels including The Speed Channel and ESPN. And, what really came across – what drew the audience in – was de Cadenet’s passion for sports cars, which came through during each and every one of his television appearances.


Fans, co-workers, and friends have taken to social media to express their sadness following the news of de Cadenet’s passing.

The Guild of Motoring Writers wrote:

The Guild is saddened to learn of the death of retired member Alain de Cadenet, who was a successful racing driver (with podium places at Le Mans), as well as a journalist. Alain was a great authority on classic cars, and wrote a column in @CandSCmagazine.

Mike Channell, a fellow racing enthusiast, had this to say, “RIP to Alain de Cadenet, a bit of a favourite of mine. If you live in the UK treat yourself to this brilliant documentary about him and Guy Edwards.”

Channell, here, included a link to 24 Hours at Le Mans. 

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