One of motor racing's leading photojournalists, Bernard Cahier, passed away earlier this week at the age of 81.
Cahier began photographing Formula One in 1952 and along with his son, Paul-Henri, amassed one of the sport's most complete and important photographic archives.
In 1983, Bernard retired and turned over the 'family business' to his son Paul-Henri, who continues in his footsteps as one of the most talented photographers on the Formula One scene. Paul-Henri was the photographer pushed over onto his back by Kimi Raikkonen as he lined up for a close-up shot of Raikkonen on the grid just before last Sunday's British Grand Prix.
Born in Marseilles, France in 1927, Cahier fell in love with racing at an early age, attending the Marseilles Grand Prix when he was 5. He grew up quickly after World War II broke out, joining the French Resistance at age 17. Cahier was awarded Croix de Guerre and the American Presidential Citation for heroism. After the war, Cahier moved to America, attended UCLA, married an American girl and took a job in an import car dealership alongside Phil Hill and Richie Ginther.
He returned to France in 1952 and began his long and illustrious career as a photographer and public relations consultant. His years in America were instrumental in assisting drivers like Phil Hill and Dan Gurney to demonstrate their abilities on the European scene. Cahier also aided American filmmaker John Frankenheimer in the production of the epic racing film 'Grand Prix' (and also appeared in a cameo role).
Cahier was also successful as a racing driver, winning the GT class in the 1967 Targa Florio with a 7th overall finish in a Porsche 911S co-driven by Olympic skiing star Jean-Claude Killy.
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