Leo Villa-Donald Campbell’s engineer.


Leo Villa was the long-serving engineer/mechanic of both Sir Malcolm Campbell and Donald Campbell. He received an OBE in June 1976 for services to land and water speed records.

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www.bluebird-electric.net -Leo Villa story

“At first sight Lake Dumbleyung was not impressive and the stumps of the “wattle” or withered gum trees sticking up out of the extremely saline water presented an obvious hazard. Added to that there was neither a slipway nor any accommodation. The place was desolate and Donald’s chances looked very remote.”

– Leo Villa, The World Water Speed Record


McPherson (22)Leo Villa at Lake Dumbleyung

McPherson (24)Leo Villa by Bluebird’s engine

Photos: Val McPherson

Books written by Leo Villa

Leo Villa (1969). The Record Breakers, Sir Malcolm & Donald Campbell, Land and Water-speed kings of the 20th Century. Hamlyn.
Leo Villa and Kevin Desmond (1976). The World Water Speed Record.
Leo Villa and Kevin Desmond (1979). Life with the Speed King. London: Marshall Harris & Baldwin. ISBN 0-906116-06-6.
David de Lara, Kevin Desmond and Leo Villa (2007). Leo Villa’s 3D album of the Bluebirds. London: Transport Bookman Publications. ISBN 0-85184-071-X. Period 3D photographs taken by Leo Villa on a Stereo Realist camera given to him by Donald Campbell.