Ken Kavanagh

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12 Dec 1923
Melbourne, Victoria


26 Nov 2019
Bergamo, Italy



Grands Prix:

0 (1958)

Died just before his 96th birthday, in Bergamo, Italy, after some years of failing health. Ran a dry-cleaning business there for many years, retiring from racing after 1960. Kavanagh, whose full name is Thomas Kenrick Kavanagh, is better remembered for his motorcycling exploits. He was the first Australian to win a World Championship motorcycle GP, winning four 350cc GP's (Ulster 1952, Belgium 1954, Holland 1955 and the TT in 1956). He also won the Ulster 500cc race in 1953. He raced for Norton and Moto Guzzi. Kavanagh then tackled four wheels after Maserati made an offer for him to drive their works cars (albeit with Kavanagh finding the funds) but it was sadly not as successful.

Biography last updated 2 Dec 2019