Classic Motorcycling

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Gone but not forgotten - long remembered!

[Dedicated to Bill Whitworth - the little dynamo]

The intention of this site is to ensure fallen riders are remembered.


As the years pass the job has become more distressing as tragedy strikes way too often. Any photos to help complete this tribute to fallen riders gratefully received, also any information on riders I've missed...the original focus was on GP riders but any racing riders of significant achievement can be nominated for inclusion. Please email Murray Barnard at [email protected] to suggest entries, provide additional photos or information, or to correct errors.


If nominating riders please provide details and information to verify an entry where possible. I don't aim to be definitive, most entries are nominated by friends, family or like me, simple motorcycle enthusiasts. It is a sad exercise but one many have found worthwhile.



Racing memoriams - Post World War Two : 1990 - see below.


1991 - present - see here

A.W.F. JOHNS: (no pic avalable) - Manx Grand Prix - 26 Aug 1946. Arthur Johns entered the 1946 Senior race of the Manx Grand Prix with a 500 Norton. This was the first motorcycle event on the Isle of Man after World War II. During practice he crashed on the last right-hand bend in the approach to Sulby Straight, close to the small town of Ramsey.

Peter M AITCHINSON(no pic avalable) -  Manx Grand Prix - 5 Sep 1946 - crashed at the 33rd milestone on the Snaefell Mountain Course in the Senior race. Peter had earlier come second in the Junior Manx on a Norton at a speed of73.89 mph. He came 3rd in the 1938 Senior Manx at a speed of 79.14 mph.

Benjy RUSSELL: (no pic avalable) - Manx Grand Prix 9 Sep 1947. Irishman Benjy Russell made his visit to the Isle of Man in the 1947 Manx Grand Prix Lightweight race riding a 250 Moto Guzzi. The race started under difficult conditions, with gale force winds sweeping the island.  On the fifth lap as Russell approached Schoolhouse Corner, a left-hand bend at Crossags Lane in Lezayre Road, in Ramsey the footrest of his Moto Guzzi touched the ground. Russell was subsequently thrown from his bike losing his helmet and goggles in the accident. Unfortunately he was killed instantly.

Johan Erik van TILBURG(no pic avalable) - Isle of Man TT - 28 May 1948. In practice for the Junior race, South African rider Johan Erik van Tilburg crashed his 350 AJS near Windy Corner after colliding with the Norton of Tommy McEwan. McEwan escaped injury, but van Tilburg was seriously hurt and died a few days later in hospital.

Thomas BRYANT:  (no pic avalable) - Isle of Man TT - 3 June 1948. Thomas crashed his velocette at Brandish Corner in practice. Bryant later died in hospital.

Neil ('Noel') CHRISTMAS  - Isle of Man TT - 11 June 1948. The accident happened on 11 June 1948 near the small town of Kirk Michael, Isle of Man, during the fifth lap of the 1948 Senior Tourist Tropy. His funeral was on 15 June 1948. Christmas was from Woking, Surrey. Neil Christmas was a well-known T.T. rider, from about 20 years before his fatal accident: a famous photograph of him, aboard a Scott machine, leaping Ballig bridge during the 1933 Isle of Man Tourist Trophy, is in the front cover of the book "Tourist Trophy Two-strokes" by George Stevens, published June 1965.

Omobono TENNI - 1948 Berne Switzerland. Tommaso Omobono Tenni (July 24, 1905 - June 30, 1948) was an Italian motorcycle road racer. Nicknamed The Black Devil, he was a multiple Italian Motor Cycle champion, who raced to 47 victories for Moto Guzzi from 1933 till 1948, the year he died from an accident during practice for the Swiss GP. Omobono Tenni was born in Tirano, Lombardy. When he was 15, his family moved to Treviso, where he began an apprenticeship at a motorcycle workshop. At 19, he opened his own workshop and began his racing career. His first victory was in 1924, at the end of his teenage years. It was not until 1931 that members of his local club contributed so that he could purchase a Velocette 350 with which he finished in third place at the Italian Grand Prix at Monza followed by a victory at the Grand Prix Reale of Rome. In 1932, he won a race at Rapallo against Moto Guzzi's star rider, Pietro Ghersi. His performance earned him a spot on the Moto Guzzi team for the 1933 season. For the 1934 season, Moto Guzzi developed a new V twin 500 cc racer and Tenni rode it to victory at the Italian Grand Prix ahead of his team-mate Stanley Woods. He would go on to win the 1934 Italian 500 cc national championship. Tenni first travelled to the Isle of Man TT in 1935. For a newcomer, he performed remarkably well. He was lying in second to his team-mate Woods, when he crashed in a fog bank on the mountain section. It was here that he came to be dubbed the Black Devil referring both to the color of his hair and his diabolical riding style. He would again capture the 500 cc Italian National Championship in 1935. The highlight of his career was winning the Lightweight at the 1937 Isle of Man TT, becoming the first Italian to win the TT. In 1937 he also won the 250cc European Championship. He suffered serious injuries in the 1938 and 1940 seasons then his racing career was put on hold by World War II. After the war, he began racing again, claiming his fourth Italian 500 cc championship in 1947. He put in a respectable performance at the 1948 Isle of Man TT where he set the race's fastest lap and led the race before mechanical difficulties forced him back to ninth place. Omobono Tenni had 47 victories racing for Moto Guzzi in the period from 1933 to 1948. 

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Ben DRINKWATER - Junior TT, 1949, Isle of Man. Reuben Thomas 'Ben' Drinkwater (13 February 1910 - 9 June 1949) born in Rochdale, Lancashire, England a railway signalman and motor-cycle racer who competed in the Isle of Man TT Races and the Manx Grand Prix. After competing in the 1946 Manx Grand Prix the first post-war event on the Snaefell Mountain Course, Ben Drinkwater returned to race in the 1947 Isle of Man TT races and finished in 3rd place in the controversial 1947 250cc Lightweight TT Race won by Manliff Barrington. While racing in the 1949 350cc Junior TT Race, the first ever race of the new FIM World Championship, Drinkwater collided with a bank trying to avoid a fellow competitor near Cronk Bane farm near the 11th milestone marker post and was killed. The distinctive S-bend corner on the Isle of Man Mountain Course near to where the accident occurred was renamed "Drinkwater's Bend" or the 11th Milestone.

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George Henry TAYLOR - sidecar - October 1949 - Brands Hatch - at a special race meeting that was to raise money for a fellow rider's widow and family.  His passenger, Donald Overall, escaped with injuries. George is on the right in the photo (click on thumbnail to enlarge). Submitted by his Grand-daughter  Louise Popplewell

David WHITWORTH - Belgian GP  350cc, 1950, Spa-Francorchamps. Malcolm David Whitworth (1904 — 3 July 1950) was a British motorcycle racer. Denied the chance to race abroad by World War II, Whitworth computed in numerous races in the United Kingdom. In 1935 and 1936 he competed in the Manx Grand Prix, but retired both times. In 1937 he competed in the Isle of Man TT for the first time, which was thought at the time to be the toughest race in the world. In the 250 cc Lightweight TT race, he competed on a Cotton motorcycle but failed to finish. He failed to finish in 1938 as well, but in the 350 cc Junior TT he came sixth on a Velocette. In the 500 cc race at the Ulster Grand Prix he finished third, behind Jock West and Ginger Wood. In 1939 he finished fifth in the Junior TT and twelfth in the 500 cc Senior TT, in which he competed for the first time. In the first post-war TT in 1947, Whitworth finished second to his team mate, Bob Foster, in the Junior TT, the best TT result of his career. He retired from the Senior TT race. In 1949, Whitworth took part in the newly created World Championship. At both the Dutch TT and the Belgian Grand Prix, Whitworth finished fourth in the 350 cc class resulting in sixth place in the overall championship standings. Outside of the championship, Whitworth won the 350 cc race at the French Grand Prix in Saint-Gaudens. In the 1950 season, Whitworth took eleventh and nineteenth places in the Junior and Senior TT respectively. For the Senior TT, he competed for the first time as a works rider, for Triumph. On 2 July 1950, Whitworth competed in the 350 cc Belgian Grand Prix at Spa-Francorchamps. He was riding a privately entered Velocette and was in a fight for fifth place with Harold Daniell, Ted Frend and Charlie Salt. On the tenth lap, Whitworth and Salt came together, crashing heavily. The following day, Whitworth died in hospital from his injuries. In accordance with his wishes, which were to be buried close to the scene of any fatal accident he might have, he was buried in the local cemetery in Spa.

Dario AMBROSINI - French  GP 250 1951, Albi. Dario Ambrosini (March 7, 1918 in Cesena - July 15, 1951 in Albi) was an Italian Grand Prix motorcycle road racer who competed for the Benelli factory racing team. He finished second to Bruno Ruffo in the inaugural FIM 250cc world championship in 1949. He returned in 1950 and claimed the 250cc world championship with three victories including one at the 1950 Isle of Man TT. Ambrosini was killed during official practice for the 1951 French Grand Prix at Albi.

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Gianni LEONI - Ulster TT 125cc, 12 August 1951, Clady - Gianni Leoni and Sante Geminiani, both riders of the Moto Guzzi team, were killed in a tragic accident during testing.  The two riders were at the track together with their team mate Enrico Lorenzetti. Geminiani and Lorenzetti made a  pit stop to change machines. Leoni, worried that his team mates had crashed went back to look for them. Meanwhile Geminiani and Lorenzetti had left the pits and were travelling at speed when they collided head on with Leoni. Sante Geminiani was killed instantly. Gianni Leoni recovered his feet; but later died in hospital in Belfast. Enrico Lorenzetti sustained only minor injuries.  Despite the tragic death of two of its factory riders and another injured, team Moto Guzzi did not withdraw from the race and the following day the works rider Bruno Ruffo won the Ulster Grand Prix 250 cm3 class in a Moto Guzzi. Gianni Leoni, 35yo from Como, had finished 2nd in the 125 World Championship 125 class in 1950 behind Ruffo and in 1951 behind Carlo Ubbiali, riding a FB-Mondial 125. At the time of his death he was second in points in the 125 World Championship class and fourth in the 250.

(Thanks to Jan Ebeltjes for the pic) 

Sante GEMINIANI - Ulster TT 125cc, 12 August 1951, Clady - see details of incident above. Sante Geminiani (b. September 4, 1919) was an Italian Grand Prix motorcycle road racer. Born in Lugo in the Emilia-Romagna, he began his professional Grand Prix racing career in 1949 riding for the Moto Guzzi factory racing team. Gemiani finished in third place behind the dominant Gilera factory teammates, Geoff Duke and Alfredo Milani in the 1951 Belgian Grand Prix held at the Spa-Francorchamps Circuit. Geminiani was killed on August 15, 1951 after colliding with his Moto Guzzi teammate, Gianni Leoni, during practice for the Ulster Grand Prix held at the Clady Circuit in Northern Ireland.

Ercole FRIGERIO - Swiss GP sidecars 18 May 1952, Berne. Ercole was injured in a crash on the 15th lap at Tenni Turn - named after Omobono Tenni, who lost his life in that spot in practice for the 1948 Grand Prix of Switzerland. Frigerio died later in hospital on the same day.  Ercole was second in the World Sidecar Championships in 1949, 1950 and 1951, behind Eric Oliver's Norton. He had won the Swiss Grand Prix at Bremgarten in 1951 He was also the Italian sidecar champion in 1948, 1949 and 1950. (Thanks to Jan Ebeltjes for the pic)

Dave BENNETT - Swiss GP 500cc, 18 May 1952, Berne. Dave  was also injured when he crashed at the Tenni Turn. The 500cc GP began at a furious rate with Bennett in mid-field. It soon developed into a race of attrition. Duke’s Norton succumbed to faulty fuel. As the race progressed there were further retirements, Dave was the sole works Norton battling with the more experienced AJS duo of Doran and Brett. A fierce battle for the lead developed, changing repeatedly. As Doran and Brett sped past the pits on lap 27 there was no sign of Bennett. It was at first presumed that he too had suffered engine trouble, but in his efforts to stay with the AJS pair, he had run out of road, hit a tree and was killed instantly. Earlier that day Italian sidecar driver Ercole Frigerio had lost his life in an accident during the sidecar event in the very same place as Bennett crashed.

Harry L. STEPHEN: (no pic avalable) - 8 June 1953- IOM TT -  fatally crashed at Bishop's Court, near Ramsey, in the opening lap of the 1953 Junior Tourist Trophy. Harry struck a pole and was killed instantly.

Thomas SWARBRICK: (no pic avalable) - 8 June 1953 - IOM TT - Tom, from Preston England, crashed his AJS 350 at Westwood, near the 13th Milestone during the 1953 Junior Tourist Trophy.

Geoff WALKER - IOM - 12 June 1953 - Geoff Walker crashed at Kerrowmoar in the 1953 Tourist Trophy Senior race. The fatal accident happened on the fifth lap when his footrest ground causing the bike to crash at speed. Geoff Walker was  from Tasmania, in Launceston. The previous day, Geoff had phoned home to Tasmania to make arrangements to buy a new Norton on which he intended racing the rest of the season in Europe. Geoff, who was staying at Mount Rule, is buried at Braddan Cemetery.

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Leslie GRAHAM - Senior TT - 12 June 1953, Isle of Man - Robert Leslie (Les) Graham DFC (14 September 1911 in Wallasey - 12 June 1953) was a British motorcycle road racer who competed in the 1930s and 1940s. He won the inaugural Grand Prix motorcycle racing 500 cc World Championship in 1949. Les Graham started racing at Liverpool's Stanley Speedway on dirt. In 1929 he entered a race on the Park Hall Oswestry circuit, riding a second hand Dot-JAP, and came second to Henry Pinnington on an AJS. For the next few years he raced a succession of Rudge hybrids with varying success. In 1936 he managed to purchase a near new 250 cc OHC OK-Supreme cheaply, because it had dropped a valve. He rebuilt it, and entered it in the 1936 Ulster Grand Prix. After completing a lap of the Clady Circuit, the big end seized. He rebuilt it for 1937, and entered Northern Ireland's North West 200, and lead the Lightweights for a while until he came off. He remounted, joined the field, and was running third behind a couple of Excelsiors, when the valve gear broke. He rebuilt the engine again, and won his next race at Donington Park. He then entered the Ulster Grand Prix, and came fourth. After this he was approached by John Humphries (the son of OK-Supreme's founder) to join the firm, and was given a job assembling the OHC engines. OK-Supreme produced short track racers with JAP engines. Les Graham, Andy McKay, and John Humphries soon became known as the Midlands trio of OK-JAP riders. In summer of 1938 they raced in the South Eastern Championships on Layhams Farm "mountain mile" grass track. Les took the 20 lap Matchless Trophy, setting a record in the process, despite never having competed on that track before. He came 12th in the 1938 Isle of Man TT Lightweight on an OK-Supreme. In 1939 he entered the IOM TT riding a Rudge engine Chris Tattersal St. Annes (CTS), and was running fourth on the second last lap, when the gearbox broke. Jock West was watching the race, and signed Les up to ride a Velo in 1940, but the War intervened, and that did not happen. Graham served as a pilot in the RAF during World War II. He was assigned to the 166 Squadron from 1940, flying Lancaster bombers over Germany. He attained the rank of Flight Lieutenant and was awarded the Distinguished Flying Cross in December 1944 for bravery.[2] Afterwards, he flew with Transport Command, until he was demobilised in 1946.He had an invitation from Wing Commander J.M. ("Jock") West, OBE, to join sales and competition at Associated Motorcycles (AMC). Afterwards, he returned to racing in the late 1940s as a member of the AJS factory racing team. He competed privately at the first post war Cadwell Park meeting, on a Norton 350, and won. In 1947, on an AJS Porcupine, he managed 9th place in the Senior Isle of Man TT. In 1948 he managed a seventh in the Junior, but did not finish in the Senior. That year at Montlhery, Jock West, Les Graham, and French rider Georges Monneret broke 18 world records at speeds between 107 and 111 mph. The Motorcycle World Championships were first held in 1949, a year before the beginning of the four-wheeler Formula One World Championship. Les was the first winner of the prestigious 500 cc class, riding an AJS Porcupine. The Championship began with Graham leading by 90 seconds in the 1st round, at the 1949 Isle of Man TT. With only a few miles to go, the magneto drive sheared and he pushed home to finish 9th. He won round 2 at Bremgarten in Switzerland and set fastest lap (in year 1 fastest laps counted for 1 point). Round 3 was the Dutch TT where he finished 2nd to Nello Pagani. He failed to finish in round 4 at Spa in Belgium. Round 5 was the Ulster Grand Prix in which he was victorious and collected the fastest lap. The final round was held at Monza in Italy where local hero Nello Pagani on a Gilera won. A rider's best three finishes counted. Graham had 2 wins & a second, Pagani had 2 wins & a 3rd. Graham took the title even though Pagani's overall score was higher. In 1950, Graham finished 3rd behind Italian Umberto Masetti (Gilera) and new star Geoff Duke (Norton) of England. He also competed in the 1950 International Six Days Trial held in Wales on an AJS 350. In 1951, Count Domenico Agusta approached Graham to ride for MV Agusta. Frustrated by a lack of development with the AJS, he joined the Italian team to ride and develop their 500 cc four-cylinder machines. Graham failed to score points for MV in the 500 cc class. While the MVs were very powerful, the handling was not as well sorted, and the bikes were considered a "handful". Agusta were not competing in the 350 cc class, so Graham rode a Velocette MkVIII KTT 350 in competition, finishing 6th in class and winning the Swiss Grand Prix. He also finished 8th in the 125 cc class in 1951. For 1952, Graham began with no points in round 1 in Switzerland, 2nd in the Isle of Man TT though a missed gear change and subsequent loss of power undoubtedly robbed him of a win. Reg Armstrong (Ireland), riding a factory Norton took victory, a very lucky one with Armstrong's chain breaking as he crossed the finish line, with Les Graham 33.4 seconds behind. He failed to score points in the Dutch TT or the Belgian GP. He finished 4th with the fastest lap at Solitude in West Germany. He suffered another non-finish but fastest lap in the Ulster (Tyre tread problems with his Dunlops). He followed this with MV Agusta's first ever 500 cc win plus the fastest lap in front of an enthusiastic Italian crowd at Monza. This was followed by a second win in Spain. He finished the season second to Gilera's Umberto Masetti in the championship. In the 250 cc class, he finished 3rd using Velocette and Benelli machines and claimed 4th in the 125 cc class for MV Agusta. For 1953, Graham was the pre-season favorite and tipped to win the championship again. Alas, this was not to be. On the Thursday, he finally won an Isle of Man TT, winning the Lightweight 125 cc class for MV. In the Friday's Senior TT, he lost control of his bike at high speed, as he took the rise after the bottom of Bray Hill, and was killed instantly. Carlo Bandirola and the rest of the MV racing team withdrew from the Championship that year as a mark of respect.

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Ernie RING - Belgian GP - 5 July 1953 - Spa. Ernie crashed his twin-cylinder AJS at the Côte de Burnenville on the third lap, being instantly killed.  Ernie had previously ridden at the IOM and also in GP events in West Germany and Ulster in 1952.

(Pic: TTfan)

Dennis LASHMAR - German GP 500cc, 1954, Solitude. Dennis Lashmar (1927 – 1954) was the first rider sponsored by Gus Kuhn Motors. The company had obtained a Manx Norton and Dennis rode it in the 1952 Senior TT, finishing 30th. In 1951 he competed in three TT events, his best result being 13th in the Senior on Harold Daniell's Norton. In 1954 he was entered by Geoff Duke in both the Junior and Senior races on Pike-BSAs, finishing in both, though his LEF didn't finish the Ultra Lightweight race. Sadly, Dennis was killed in the penultimate lap of the 500cc German Grand Prix at Solitude near Stuttgart in July 1954 while riding a BSA.
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Gordon LAING - Belgian 350 GP 4 July 1954 - known as "Manxie" by friends, Gordon lost his life on a wet day during the 1954 Belgian Grand Prix, held at Spa-Francorchamps. Gordon,  25yo from Melbourne, Victoria, Australia, had joined the Norton Team two weeks before, having his debut in the World Motorcycle Championship at the Ulster Grand Prix held at Dundrod. Gordon Laing tried to stay with Ray Amm who was battling for the lead with Kavanagh. While running in third place, Gordon Laing crashed at the flat-out La Carriére bend on his second lap. He was killed instantly. Fergus Anderson who was riding behind Laing at the time of his crash, lost five positions entering the pits to report the accident to the marshals. He eventually finished second in the race riding a Moto Guzzi, behind another Australian rider, his team mate Ken Kavanagh who was the winner.


L. HALL - (no pic available) -19 April 1954 - died after crashing at Crystal Palace London whilst avoiding a fallen bike. He hit a group of photographers when crashing.

Ruppert HOLLAUS - Italian  GP 125 1954, Monza (Thanks to Peter Osborn for the pic). Rupert Hollaus (4 September 1931 in Traisen - 11 September 1954) was an Austrian Grand Prix motorcycle road racer who competed for the NSU factory racing team. He is the only Austrian to win a road racing World Championship. Hollaus began his Grand Prix career in the 1953 season. In the 1954 season, he dominated the 125cc class by winning the first four Grands Prix. Later that same year, he was killed in practice for the Italian Grand Prix at Monza. Hollaus became the first posthumous World Champion in 1954, in the 125cc class and was runner up to his NSU team-mate, Werner Haas, in the 250cc class.

Ray AMM - 1955 Imola. William Raymond Amm (10 December 1927 – 11 April 1955) was born in Salisbury, Southern Rhodesia, was a famous post-war motorcycle racer famous for two motorcycle Grand Prix wins and 3 wins at the Isle of Man TT Races in his career. After signing for the 1955 Grand Prix motorcycle racing season to ride for MV Agusta, Ray Amm was killed in his first race for MV Agusta in Italy in 1955.  For the 1952 Dutch TT, Ray Amm was a full member of the Norton team and was second to Geoff Duke in the 350cc Dutch TT and retired from the 500 cc race. At the 1952 German Grand Prix held at Solitude, Ray Amm crashed and broke a leg, returning later in the 1952 Grand Prix motorcycle racing season to win the 350 cc class for the 1952 Nations Grand Prix held at Monza in Italy. For the 1953 racing season, Ray Amm debuted the controversial Norton Kneeler 350cc motorcycle at the 1953 North West 200 Race. Despite overheating problems the Norton Kneeler with the nickname the "Amm Sandwich" or "Silver-Fish", Ray Amm finished in 9th place in the 350 cc class that was eventually won by Bob McIntyre at an average race speed of 86.86 mph. Despite testing the Norton Kneeler for practice for the 1953 Isle of Man TT Races, Ray Amm reverted back to the non-steamlined Norton motorcycles due to handling problems with cross-winds on the Mountain Section of the course and also opposition by the TT Race Scrutineers. It proved a good choice as Ray Amm won the 1953 Junior TT Race at an average race speed of 90.52 mph from Ken Kavanagh in 2nd place and Fergus Anderson in 3rd place. Another win in the 1953 Senior TT Race for Ray Amm at an average race speed of 93.85 mph completed a prestigious Junior/Senior TT double win for the works Norton team. Following Ray Amm during the 1953 Senior TT Race, Geoff Duke commented on Ray Amm's distinctive riding style;- "After I had caught and passed Ray Amm on the Norton, he passed me at Ballugh when I missed a gearchange! Then there was the frightening experience of following him to the end of the lap, Ray could be pretty lurid when he was trying!" A fall at the 1953 French Grand Prix at Rouen in the 350cc class broke a collar-bone and brought about a premature end to championship ambitions for Ray Amm for the 1953 Grand Prix motorcycle racing season. However, Ray Amm returned to the abortive Norton Kneeler project in November 1953 to set a number of world speed records at Montlhéry, France rasing the hour speed endurance record to a distance of 133.70 miles. Also at Montlhéry in November 1953, Ray Amm shared a streamlined Norton Sidecar outfit with Eric Oliver to set further speed records. Again riding for the works Norton in 1954 Isle of Man TT Races, despite leading the 1954 Junior TT a retirement on lap 5 for Ray Amm, allows Rod Coleman to become the first New Zealander to win a TT Race at an average race speed of 91.51 mph. The 1954 Senior TT race was delayed due to weather conditions and reduced visibility on the Mountain Section of the course. The race is held after a short delay and starts at mid-day. Despite the conditions, Geoff Duke riding the works Gilera and leads Ray Amm riding for Norton by 14 seconds on lap 1. On the second lap, Geoff Duke laps in 26 minutes and 23 seconds at an average speed of 86.97 mph and Ray Amm laps at an average speed of 86.49 to reduce the lead to just 2 seconds. Further heavy rain and low cloud on the Mountain Section reduces speed further and on lap 2 and Ray Amm uses "feet-down" tactics on the slower corners. Then Geoff Duke decides to refuel on lap 3 and Ray Amm in second place goes straight through without stopping and now leads Geoff Duke by 32 seconds. At the Windy Corner on lap 4, the visibility is down to 20 yards and a decision is made to stop the race because of the conditions. This allowed Ray Amm, due to refuel at the TT Grandstand on lap 4, to win the highly controversial 1954 Senior TT Race in 1 hour, 42 minutes and 46.8 seconds at an average race speed of 88.12 mph. The next event after the 1954 Isle of Man TT Races was the Ulster Grand Prix held at the Dundrod Circuit in Northern Ireland. In an event that was much affected by rain, Ray Amm won the 350 cc Ulster Grand Prix at an average race speed of 83.47 mph from Jack Brett in 2nd place and Bob McIntyre in 3rd place. The 500 cc Ulster Grand Prix was reduced from 27 laps to 15 laps due to heavy rain and again the race was won by Ray Amm at an average race speed of 83.87 mph, although later these result was excluded from the World Championship by the FIM. A further Grand Prix win in 1954 follows for Ray Amm with another 350 cc victory at the German Grand Prix held at Solitudering. At the end of the 1954 Grand Prix motorcycle racing season Ray Amm finished in 2nd place in both the 350 cc and 500 cc classifications behind world champions Fergus Anderson and Geoff Duke. Despite many offers Ray Amm finally moved from the works Norton motorcycles to the factory MV Agusta racing team. The debut race for Ray Amm and MV Agusta was to be the 1955 Easter Monday race meeting at the Autodromo Enzo e Dino Ferrari in Imola, Italy. Riding a 350cc four-cylinder MV Agusta in the Coppa d'Oro Shell Race, Ray Amm lost control at the Rivazza Corner as he pursued Kavanagh and crashed in slippery conditions and died of his injuries on the way to hospital.

Derek ENNETT - Ulster GP 350cc, 9 Aug 1956, Dundrod - Derek Ennett crashed near Budore on a works Moto Guzzi. Ennett had lost control after hitting a slippery patch of road. He was a newcomer to the Dundrod circuit.

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Hans BALTISBERGER - 1956 - Brünn. Hans Baltisberger (born September 16, 1924, Betzingen, Germany - August 26, 1956 ) was a Grand Prix motorcycle road racer from Germany. His best year was in 1954 when he finished the season in fifth place in the 250cc world championship. Baltisberger was killed while riding a 250cc NSU motorcycle at the 1956 Czechoslovakian Grand Prix, a non-championship event at the Masaryk Circuit in Brno.

Fergus ANDERSON - Floreffe Belgium - 1956. 

Fergus Kenrick Anderson (February 9, 1909 – May 6, 1956) was a two-time Grand Prix motorcycle road racing World Champion. A Scot, he was one of the first riders from Great Britain to make his living racing motorcycles on the European continent. In 1950 he signed with Moto Guzzi and competed in the 250cc class. He convinced Moto Guzzi to build a 350cc bike, initially of 320cc but later a proper full 350. He raced to the 1953 world championship in the bike's first year of competition. He repeated this feat as 350cc champion again in 1954. His 350cc world championship wins were the first by a non-British bike. He retired from racing to become Moto Guzzi's team manager, but quit over a dispute over having a freer hand at running the team. He returned to racing and was offered a ride by the BMW factory. He was killed in 1956 after being thrown from his bike at a race in Belgium at Floreffe.

Charlie Salt's light weight Earl's forked 1951 BSA

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Charlie SALT - Senior TT, 1957, Isle of Man. The record breaking Senior TT Race and the Golden Jubilee celebrations were marred by the death of Charlie Salt who crashed a BSA motorcycle at Ballagarraghyn Corner and was killed during the later stages of the 1957 Senior TT Race. Charlie Salt raced, test rode for BSA motorcycles, dabbled in engine development, and lost his life at the 1957 Golden Jubilee TT. His brother George T. Salt also raced up till that time, having come 9th in the SeniorTT in 1956 on a Norton. While Charlie showed promise in post war Manx Grand Prix events his results were not as good in the ensuing years. He was born circa 1916, but does not appear in IOM records till after WWII, when he was in his thirties. In 1951 Bert Hopwood demonstrated the Super Flash to the French police at Monthlery. "The French police wanted a bike that would haul a fully-equipped Gendarme sitting upright at 100mph. The only way the BSA test riders Charlie salt and Bill Nicholson could do this was to chin the tank in the wooded section of Monthlery where they couldn't be seen, get to 100 then sit up just as they emerged from the trees and into view..." In the 1952 Lightweight TT Charlie rode a Pike-Rudge, as did the builder Roland Pike, Charlie coming 10th and Roland 13th. "Charles Francis Salt was a 43 year old motor car dealer from Streetly, Staffordshire. An experienced rider, he’d been riding for 25 years and had competed in the TT, Manx and Ulster TT. The senior race of 1957 was run over 8 laps for the first time, and it was on this final lap that Salt crashed. At 2pm, as he raced through Gorse Lea, about a mile before Ballacraine, the engine of his BSA seized. Struggling to contain the wobble, Salt and his machine struck a low stone wall and a concrete post adorned with red reflectors, ripping it from the ground. Salt was thrown 33 feet and landed suspended between a beech tree and the wall, from where the injured rider was recovered by spectators and laid in the field. Dr Bull attended from Ballacraine and found the poor man unconscious and with multiple spine fractures. He did come round sufficiently to ask what had happened. Salt was placed in an ambulance and arrived at Nobles hospital at 3:30pm, but despite the administration of oxygen and blood transfusions, he succumbed to his injuries. His wife and young son were spectating from the grandstand at the time". Charlie Salt crashed, probably because of a gear-box seizure, during the eighth lap of the 1957 Senior Tourist Trophy. That year the race was eight laps. He died after arrival in hospital, probably in Douglas, of an internal bleeding. Charlie Salt was a regular and popular participant at the Isle Of Man races, he started racing at the Manx Grand Prix in 1946. After three years in which he obtained a third in the 1948 Senior race as best result, he switched to the Tourist Trophy, where he rode Velocette and BSA machines. His achievements also include a second at the 350 cm3 Ulster GP in 1949, a fifth in the 1950 Belgian Grand Prix, again in the 350 cm3 class, both results obtained with a Velocette. He was then second at the 1955 Leinster 200, riding a 350 cm3 BSA.


Josef KNEBEL - Dutch TT Sidecar, 28 June 1957, Assen - Josef was killed during practice for the Dutch TT at Assen.  Josef  crashed at de Bult bend of the Circuit van Drenthe of Assen. He was twenty-five years old.  His passenger Rolf Amfaldern escaped with minor injuries. (pic courtesy Helmut Ohner)

Roger BARKER - collapsed and died from heat exhaustion and injury whilst racing on the 7.6km Schleiz public road circuitThuringia East Germany 1957. Roger had been in the Schleiz less than a week. But in that time he had created such an impression that 2000 people attended his funeral. Barker was a member of Australia’s 1957 Isle of Man TT team. He had been in Continental Circus for less than a season and contested half a dozen international race meetings. Roger qualified on pole position for the 350 race. However, race day was blazing hot. Forty degrees and Roger was never comfortable in serious heat. Moreover, in 1957 sports people didn’t know about dehydration as they do today. Roger led from the start of the 350 race, setting a new outright lap record before retiring with tyre trouble. In the 500 race, Roger led once again – chased by Germany’s Ernst Hiller on a BMW. But midway through the scheduled 20 laps and on the opposite side of the course from the start/finish, the conditions proved too much. Roger Barker collapsed, falling from his machine in a straight line. He struck a lone apple tree at the side of the circuit and sadly was killed instantly. 


Roberto COLOMBO - Belgian GP 125 1957, Spa. Roberto Colombo (January 5, 1927, in Casatenovo - July 6, 1957, in Francorchamps) was an Italian Grand Prix motorcycle road racer who competed for the MV Agusta factory racing team. His best seasons were 1956 and 1957 when he finished fourth in the 250cc world championship. Colombo was killed during practice for the 1957 Belgian Grand Prix.

(Thanks to Jan Ebeltjes for the pic)

Fritz HILLEBRAND - sidecar driver - killed at Bilbao during practice  at the Deusto-San Ignacio street circuit - 27 August 1957 - Hillebrand was crowned posthumously the 1957 Sidecar World Champion, having scored three wins on the five rounds of the series. 

: (no pic available) - 5 April 1958 - killed during practice for the Bathurst Australia Tourist Trophy

Desmond WOOLF (no pic available)- died 6 June 1958 - Des of Southern Rhodesia was killed at the Isle of Mann TT in the Senior TT riding a 498 cc Norton. He was killed at Cronk Village Cottage Barregarrow. Des had always said that he would like to be buried in line with the start and finish line of the IOM TT circuit.

John CLARK - Moulins France - 22 June 1958 - whilst riding a Norton. The gearbox of his 500 Norton seized and he was struck by following riders Jacques Collot and Maurice de Polo. 
(image -

Keith CAMPBELL - Cadours France 13 Jul 1958


Keith Ronald Campbell (b.2 October 1931 in Melbourne) was a former Grand Prix motorcycle road racer from Australia. Keith Campbell grew up in the Melbourne suburb of Prahran with the ambition to be a champion racing motor cyclist. He became Australia's first motorcycling world champion when he won the 1957 FIM 350cc world championship as a member of the Moto Guzzi factory racing team. He married Geraldine, the sister-in-law of Britain’s championship rider Geoff Duke and came back to Australia on his honeymoon in December 1957. He returned to Europe as the star rider at the 500cc Grand Prix de Cadours near Toulouse in France. According to a newspaper report, in trials he had beaten all records for the circuit, lapping at 71.5 miles an hour. He was leading the race when he failed to round a bend known as Cox’s Corner, crashed and was killed instantly. His cause of death was said to be a fractured skull. This same corner claimed the life of Frenchman Raymond Sommer in 1952 and the circuit is named in his honour. 

Jacques DRION: 24 August 1958 - killed in non-championship sidecar race at the Czech GP in an accident that also took the life of Ingeborg Stoll-Laforge.
Ingeborg STOLL-LAFORGE: 24 August 1958 - killed in non-championship sidecar race at the Czech GP. Inge was a passenger in the sidecar driven by Jacques Drion, who also died from injuries incurred in the accident. Inge was noted as the first female competitor at the IOM TT when she competed in the 1954 sidecar race. Inge was married to Manfred Grunwald.
Edward BORER: (no pic available) - killed at Ramp Bend Crystal Palace London - 30 March 1959. Both Peter Luscombe and Edward Borer died in a crash in the same race at Crystal Palace. Edward Borer was the first to crash when approching the Ramp bend he hit a barrier and was thrown from his Norton. His bike landed on him and probably killed him on the spot. The marshals failed to stop the race and several other riders crashed intothe debris and fallen riders. Peter Luscombe was thrown into the air and died when his helmet broke upon impact.
Peter LUSCOMBE: (no pic available) - killed at Crystal Palace London in same incident as Edward Borer, after striking fallen machines at Ramp Bend- 30 March 1959. See details above. Luscombe was riding a Triumph.
James COATES: 4 Sep 1959 - He crashed at 33rd Milestone during Friday's practice for the 1959 Junior Manx Grand Prix and was killed instantly. Marshals and spectators at the place reported that Coates the left hand bend too fast, his front wheel went onto the grass and he lost control striking some wooden posts.  James Coates lived in Nelson, Lancashire. He had previously ridden on the Isle of Man in 1954 and 1956. He also raced in the Manx Grand Prix in 1956.

John HAMILTON: 10 Sep 1959 - IOM - John, from Southampton, also crashed at the 33rd Milestone during the first lap of the Senior Manx Grand Prix on his Norton and died later at Nobles Hospital in Douglas.


Peter FERBRACHE - Dutch TT 350cc, 26 June 1960, Assen - He was transported to a hospital where he died three days after the accident, on 28 June 1960, without regaining consciousness. Ferbrache had been an official rider for Montesa.

 Bob BROWN - German GP 1960, Solitude  Bob Brown (9 May 1930 in Sydney - 23 July 1960 at Solituderennen) was an Australian Grand Prix motorcycle road racer. His best season was in 1959 when he finished in third place in both the 350cc and 500cc world championships. Brown was killed during practice for the 1960 West German Grand Prix.

Dickie DALE - April 1961 Nurburgring Germany. Richard H. Dale (25 April 1927 - 30 April 1961) was a Grand Prix motorcycle road racer born in Wyberton near Boston, Lincolnshire, England. He competed in the inaugural 1949 Grand Prix motorcycle racing season. Dale was a victor in the 1951 North West 200. His best seasons were 1955 and 1956 when he finished in second place in the 350cc world championship, both times behind his Moto Guzzi team-mate Bill Lomas. Dale also competed in the 500cc class aboard Moto Guzzi's famous V8 Grand Prix bike. He died on the way to hospital after crashing during the 1961 Eifelrennen race at Nürburgring, Germany.

Ralph RENSEN - TT 16 June 1961, Isle of Man. Ralph was a Grand Prix motorcycle road racer. He finished the 1961 Grand Prix motorcycle racing season in sixth place in the 350cc world championship. Rensen was killed whilst competing in the 1961 Isle of Man Senior Tourist Trophy, aged 28 years.

(Thanks to Jan Ebeltjes for the pic)


Marie Laure LAMBERT - Sidecar TT (passenger), 1961, Isle of Man - Swiss motorcycle racer. Marie Lambert competed as a female passenger with sidecar driver and husband Claude Lambert. At the 1961 Isle of Man TT Races the BMW sidecar outfit of Claude Lambert and Marie Lambert crashed at Gob-ny-Geay (35th Milestone) above Brandish Corner and Marie Lambert died from her injuries.

(Photograph courtesy of her husband Claude Lambert) Also pic here (

 Ron MILES - Ulster GP - 9 Aug 1961 - Dundrod - crashed in practice for the Ulster Grand Prix riding a 350 Norton.

Tom PHILLIS - Junior TT 1962, Isle of Man  (pic here). Thomas Edward Phillis (9 April 1934 in Sydney – 6 June 1962) was a Grand Prix motorcycle road racer. In 1961, he won Honda's first championship race when he took the 1961 125cc Spanish Grand Prix. He went on to win the FIM 1961 125cc World Championship. This was also Honda's first world championship. Phillis was married to Betty and they had two children, Debra and Braddan. He died while competing in the 1962 Isle of Man TT. He was cremated and his ashes were scattered at the TT race course startline. The defending 500 cc world champion, Gary Hocking, was so affected by the death of his friend that he immediately retired from motorcycle competition.

Bob MCINTYRE - Oulton Park 1962

 He is most famously associated with the Isle of Man TT race, where he was the first to record a 100mph (160 km/hr) lap. Robert MacGregor McIntyre (28 November 1928 Scotstoun, Glasgow - 15 August 1962) was a Scottish motorcycle racer famous for five motorcycle Grand Prix wins which included three wins at the Isle of Man TT Races, and four victories in the North West 200. In 1957, owing to personal intervention by injured Gilera works rider Geoff Duke, McIntyre was offered a ride on the four cylinder Gileras for the Isle of Man TT. Race week began with the Junior TT. He broke the lap record with a 97.42 mph (156.78 km/h) and his race average was 94.99 mph (152.87 km/h). In celebration of the Golden Jubilee, the Senior was run over eight laps, a race of 302 miles (486 km). The Gileras had pannier fuel tanks built into the side of the fairings to carry extra fuel. The extra fuel weight didn't stop him from making a 99.99 mph (160.92 km/h) first lap. The second lap saw 101.03 mph (162.59 km/h), and the fourth lap was the fastest at 101.12 mph (162.74 km/h). He caught up to, and overtook 1956 World Champion, John Surtees who was riding an MV Agusta 500. McIntyre went on to win, after racing for three hours, two minutes and fifty-seven seconds. This was Bob McIntyre's best TT. The 1957 World Championship looked to be within reach, but a crash at Assen, in the Dutch TT meant he was out of action for a couple of months. He did come second in the 500 cc Ulster Grand Prix, and won the 350 cc Nations Grand Prix at Monza. His team mate Libero Liberati won the 500 cc World Championship that year, with Bob McIntyre coming second. Bob was third in the 350 cc World Championship as well.
At the end of 1957 the Italian teams quit Grand Prix racing citing increasing costs. In November 1957, with racing over, Gilera had McIntyre ride a 350 cc racer around the banked Monza circuit in an attempt to break the one hour speed record, and he averaged 141 mph (227 km/h) on the bumpy Monza surface. This record was not bettered until 1964, and then by Mike Hailwood at 144.8 on an MV Agusta, on the track at Daytona. In the 1961 Isle of Man TT Lightweight he raised the lap record to 99.58 mph (160.26 km/h), and had a strong lead, when his engine seized, ending his race. Riding a Norton in the Senior TT he came second. He won the 1961 250cc Ulster Grand Prix. In the 1962 Isle of Man Lightweight TT, he raised the lap record to 99.61, and then retired with electrical problems. He also rode in Grand Prix races on Honda and Bianchi, making the podium in Holland, Belgium, and East Germany. In 1962 McIntyre finished second in the Spanish and French Grands Prix, while he had a non-start in the 500 Senior TT and mechanical problems in both the 250 and 350 cc events. He went on to win the Belgium GP at the Spa-Francorchamps circuit in the Ardennes, his last victory on the World stage. McIntyre still competed in non-championship events, and it was at one such event at Oulton Park, Cheshire in August 1962 that he won the 250 cc race, and then started in the 500 cc race on his Manx Norton. After a bad start in poor conditions, he fought his way to the front before crashing, and sustaining serious injuries. After nine days in hospital, he died, an outstanding racer, and a great loss to the motorcycling world.

Harold SCHOLES - fatally injured at Brands Hatch - 19 August 1962 - whilst competing on a  sidecar and died of his injuries 9 days later 28 August 1962 
(Click on thumbnail to enlarge)
Dave DOWNER - 12 May 1963 - killed in a race at Brands Hatch in a controversial incident involving Derek Minter when Derek lost traction and Dave in avoiding the crash hit a tree and was fatally injured


Marcelin HERRANZ - French GP - 1 June 1963 - Charade. Marcelin , from Paris, France, was killed during time trials for the Grand Prix de France. His 250 Morini left the road on the precipitous Clermont-Ferrand circuit and Marcelin died from the fall.. 

click on thumbnail to enlarge - pic by Stéphane Lecoq)

Morrie LOW (NZ) - 8 August 1964 - Schauinsland Hill-climb. New Zealander rider Morrie Low was killed in an accident whilst practicing for the ADAC-Bergpreis at the Freiburg - Schauinsland hillclimb. Morrie was riding an AJS 350.

Karl RECKTENWALD - 19 July 1964, WM-Race Solitude, Germany. During the  Großer Preis von Deutschland Walter Scheimann's gearbox locked-up and in crashing he took out Karl Recktenwald. Scheimann was only bruised but Karl had broken his legs. Unfortunatley Karl Recktenwald later died in hospital.


Vernon COTTLE - Finnish GP 6 September 1964, Imatra. Vernon lost control of his AJS 350 on the approach to the Savikanta bend and crashed. He was admitted to the intensive care unit of the Imatra hospital. Sadly he passed away eight days later, on Sunday, 6 September 1964.  Vernon Cottle was 38 and lived at Cherry Tree Cottage, in Hambrook, South Gloucestershire, England. A popular racer, he took part in the Isle of Man TT 9 times. In 1964 he entered the World Motorcycle Championship, 350 class, on his AJS.

Ramon TORRAS - Killed Spanish GP 1965, Comarruga, Spain. Ramon Torras Figueras (Barcelona, December 22, 1942 – Coma-ruga May 30, 1965) was a Catalan Grand Prix motorcycle road racer from Spain. Torras was born in Barcelona. His best year was 1965, when he finished in eighth place in the 250cc world championship.

Florian CAMATHIAS - sidecar crash Brands Hatch - Oct 1965. Florian Camathias was born in Wittenbach (San Gallo), Switzerland, and was a leading sidecar racer. In 1945 he finished 3rd in the 500cc solo class at Losanna. In 1953 he achieved his first sidecar race win, and the following year saw him riding for Gilera, winning in Barcelona and finishing 7th in the World Championships. By 1955, he was on a BMW, winning the French GP and winning the Swiss Championship. He came 5th in the 1956 World Championship. 1958 saw him take his first GP win at Assen, Holland. In 1961 his passenger was killed at Modena, and he cut back on his racing.1963 saw him win his one and only TT race - one of his proudest moments.1964 saw him try a Gilera outfit again but he soon returned to his BMW, and in 1965 won the French GP again. 

Brian DUFFY: (no pic available) - IOM TT 28 August 1966 - Yamaha seized on the Mountain - Duffy a veteran 47 year old racer was killed instantly.

Toshio FUJII - TT 26 August 1966, Isle of Man - Kawasaki 125. The 1965 Hutchinson 100 Melano Trophy winner on a 50cc works Suzuki, Toshio crashed in practice on his first visit to the island. Toshio Fujii came with the factory Kawasaki team in 1966, having had the factory's first European outing at the West German GP. Toshio Fujii was an official Kawasaki entry on a 125cc water cooled twin. Unfortunately he died after the practice crash at May Hill. 

Fritz SCHEIDEGGER - sidecar - 26 Mar 1967 (pic here and here). Whilst in the lead at Mallory Park Fritz was killed instantly after crashing at the Hairpin. The crash occurred when his brake lever broke and despite trying to reduce speed using the hand-brake and gearbox he was unable to recover and avoid a massive spill. 

Fritz was from Switzerland and owned a service station and workshop in Langenthal. He  became the Swiss national sidecar champion four times from 1956. In 1958 he raced  in the World Sidecar Championship and was highly competitive. In 1965 Scheidegger and Robinson won their first World Championship. The following year Fritz won again. By the end of 1966 he announced his retirement from racing but then he decided to go on for another year. The Easter meeting at Mallory Park was the first race of the season.

Ian D.VEITCH: (no pic available) -10 June 1968 - IOM TT - New Zealander Ian Veitch crashed his Kawasaki 250 into a wall in the Lightweight Tourist Trophy at Ballagarey. Ian was killed instantly.

Josef SCHILLINGER - Belgian GP sidecars - 7 Jul 1968, Spa - The 1968 sidecar Grand Prix de Belgique featured a very competitive race between the BMW outfits of Johann Attenberger and his passenger Josef Schillinger and Georg Auerbacher and his passenger Hermann Hahn. Attenberger lost control on the last lap at full speed down the Masta Straight, hit the corner of a house and then crashed into a pine tree. The twooutfits may have collided before the crash. Unfortunately, Attenberger and Schillinger were killed instantly. Attenberger and Schillinger had won the Dutch TT at Assen just one week earlier, and were leading the World Sidecar Championship.
Click on thumbnail to enlarge

Johann ATTENBERGER - 7 Jul 1968 - Johann Attenberger  and Joseph Schillinger died in the crash of their sidecar during the GP of Belgium at Spa (pic here). See details above.

John HARTLE - 31 Aug 1968 Scarborough (click on thumbnail and also pic here and here and here).  

John Hartle (December 22, 1933 in Chapel-en-le-Frith, Derbyshire - August 31, 1968) was a British Grand Prix motorcycle road racer. Hartle began racing in 1954 and in 1956 he signed for Norton to ride for them in what would be the last year for the factory team. MV Agusta signed him in 1958 at the urging of John Surtees. He ended the season as runner-up to Surtees in the 500 and 350 classes. In 1960, he won his first Isle of Man TT winning the Junior TT. After being released by MV Agusta, he rode for Geoff Duke's privateer Gilera team. Hartle was killed in 1968 after crashing at the Oliver's Mount circuit in Scarborough.

Keith SMITH: (no pic available) - died 2 Sep 1968 - on the way to hospital after crashing at the Crystal Palace Circuit London

Puch 262 RS

Alois HOFER - 8 Sep 1968 - Gaisburg Germany (pic courtesy Helmut Ohner). In a tragic accident the Austrian rider Alois Hofer from Graz, crashed his two-cylinder Puch Type 262 RS in the 1968 Gaisberg hillclimb. The accident itself seemed insinificant but the bike caught fire and the flames engulfed Alois causing him fatal injury. Albin Sterbenz and the very talented mechanic and racing driver Alois Hofer had set out to design a competitive twin-cylinder racing bike in order to later on build a good production model from it, deserves its own chapter in the Puch racing sport history. Unfortunately this chapter is also the saddest one, because it marked not only the end of the company’s engagement in racing, but racing also claimed the life of Alois Hofer, born 1933. The twin-cylinder engine consisted of two conjoined 125M engines. After a lot of work they finally obtained 50 PS in the performance test, a tremendous result at that time. It was mounted in a tubular frame patterned after the Norton Featherbed  frame. For the transmission a 6-gear transmission unit was used since the bike was primarily raced in hillclimbs. Many national races were won in 1968 but this year was also fatal for Alois Hofer. A crash that was relatively harmless cost him his life when his racing leathers caught fire. This caused Puch to withdraw from racing and it was also the end of races on the Gaisberg. A sad tale indeed.

Bill IVY - East German GP 350 1969, Sachsenring. William David Ivy (27 August 1942–12 July 1969) was a British Grand Prix motorcycle road racer from Maidstone, Kent. Ivy started racing motorbikes at Brands Hatch in 1959. He raced in the Grand Prix motorcycle racing championship towards the end of 1965, where he finished fourth in two 125 cc races and third in a 250 cc race. In 1966, he raced for the works Yamaha team, won the first race of the year at the Montjuich Circuit in Spain, and took three more wins—not enough, however, to beat Swiss rider Luigi Taveri, who beat Ivy to the title by six points.

In 1967, Ivy dominated the 125 cc championship: he won eight out of twelve races to claim the World Championship by 16 points over Phil Read. On top of this, he won two 250 cc races in France and Belgium.

In 1968, Ivy and teammate Phil Read controlled both the 125 and 250 cc championships. In the process Ivy also became the first 125cc rider to lap the famous Isle Of Man TT Mountain Course at over 100 mph. As the season progressed, Yamaha ordered them to win one title each, with Ivy scheduled to win the 250 cc championship and Read the 125 cc championship.[1] After securing the 125 cc title, Read ignored Yamaha's orders to tie with Ivy on points. The tie break was decided on overall race times, and Read took the title. Ivy announced his retirement from motorcycle racing, stating he would race Formula Two cars during the next season. Despite showing some impressive results in Formula Two, he was enticed back to motorcycling by an offer from Jawa in 1969 to race their 350 cc motorcycle. The season started promising, as he took two second places behind Giacomo Agostini. However, during practice for the fifth race, on the Sachsenring in East Germany, Ivy was touring back to the paddock with his helmet resting on the tank when his motorcycle's engine seized. He was thrown from the bike, sustained massive head injuries, and died in hospital.

Frantisek BOCEK - Czech GP 350 - 21 July 1969, Brno. Coming only one week after the death of Bill Ivy, the loss of Frantisek was the last straw for Jawa's international hopes. František Boček - Ivy's team mate at Jawa - was killed on the third lap of the 350 race. František Boček collided with János Drapál and Herbert Denzler, both on Aermacchi machines. All three fell and Boček suffered severa head injuries when he struck a wall.

Jack LINDH: d. 31.Aug.1969 - Tampere, Finland. Bo Granath advised, "

Jack was my teacher in 1961 when I started in the racing school and he became one of my very best friends and we did go to racing together for many years. He crashed in Tampere in Finland 1969 in the 500 race on a Matchless G-50. The right picture is before the start that race. I was on his side at the start and his engine did not stop owing to his Amal GP carb had worn out threads on the topring of the carb. I told him to engage a gear a stop the engine, and then I told him “be careful”. However he crashed and died because of this or possibly a miscalculation. There was a heavy braking after the backstraight and on a film of the accident he is lying down behind the screen when he should have started braking. I did buy his crashed bike to find out what happened but could not find anything wrong with the bike. Jack was a very good rider and in the East-German GP 1969 he finished 9th in the 500 on his Matchless". Submitted by Bo Granath. Click on image to enlarge.

Robin FITTON - German GP - 12 July 1970, Nürburgring (click on thumbnail to enlarge). Edwin Robin Fitton (b. Leeds, 1928) was a Grand Prix motorcycle road racer from Leeds, West Yorkshire. Fitton's racing career commenced in 1951. His first victory was the Munster 100 handicap in Cork, Ireland on 14 July 51, riding a BSA 350. Fitton was an active member of the "Continental Circus" for an incredible 19 seasons. His best season was in 1968 when he finished the year in fourth place in the 500cc world championship. Fitton was sadly killed at the Nürburgring during practice for the 1970 West German Grand Prix. During Saturday practice he crashed heavily at the Wipperman section of the Nürburgring. Unfortunately steel guardrails had been installed on this corner. Fitton lost a leg in the accident and also suffered serious head injuries. He was airlifted to hospital in Bonn; but died in the afternoon.
(More pics here 1, 2, 3 , 4)

Sven RENLUND: (no pic available) - Ice racing, Sundsval Ornskoldsvik in 1970. Sven was the first rider to be killed in ice racing events in Sweden. Sven lost control of his bike which then went hit the fence and he crashed head-on into a car which was parked there. Sven was killed upon impact. 
Les ILES(no pic available) 1 June 1970 - Les was the first rider to die of six in the IOM Tourist Trophy race for 1970. He died riding his 125 cc Bultaco when he hit the wall at Brandish corner above Kate's Cottage during practice. The accident was believed to have occurred when the soldered nipple of the bike`s front brake cable gave way.

Michael COLLINS(no pic available) 3 June 1970 - Senior TT IOM - Mick crashed during practice, when his 500 Seeley left the road and hit the fence at the Verandah. 26yo from Crayford, Kent, Collins had been racing for six years. He helped Colin Seeley, test riding for him at Brands Hatch. 

Denis BLOWER: (click on pic to enlarge) 3 June 1970 - IOM TT - Dnis was sadly killed when his 500 BSA sidecar outfit left the road approaching the Mountain Box. Dennis was 23yo and from Mattersey Thorpe, Notts.   His passenger, Stuart Brown, was seriously injured, unconscious for ten days wth very serious injuries to both arms, shoulders, pelvis and hip.

Pic kindly supplied by Tony Skirrow -  Denis Blower  taken in the 1969TT practice when Tony was his passenger.

Pic kindly supplied by Mark Brown of Dennis and Stuart on the fateful lap.

Santiago HERRERO - Lightweight TT June 10 1970, Isle of Man (pic here and here). Santiago Herrero (b. May 9, 1943) was a Grand Prix motorcycle road racer. He was born in Madrid, Spain. At the age of 12 Santiago Herrero bought his first motorcycle. In 1962, he obtained his racing license, competing on a Derbi and doing his own maintenance. He soon moved up to a Bultaco Tralla 125 and caught the eye of Luis Bejarano, the owner of Lube (a Spanish motorcycle marque) who recognized Herrero's talent. Bejarano offered him a job in the company's competition department. In 1964, Herrero finished in third place in the 125cc Spanish National Championship and in 1965, he finished in second. Unfortunately, the Lube marque ran into financial difficulties and went out of business. Herrero decided to go into business for himself, running a motorcycle repair shop in Bilbao. He purchased a Bultaco and competed as a privateer. Around this period, Eduardo Giró, lead designer of the Ossa motorcycle company developed a revolutionary bike with a monocoque chassis. Recognizing Herrero's riding talent as well as his mechanical skills, Giró offered him a job to develop the Ossa 250cc race bike. Together they won the 250cc Spanish National Championship in 1967. In 1968, he would move up to compete in the 250cc Grand Prix world championship. Although the single cylinder Ossa had 20 HP less than the powerful V4 Yamahas of Phil Read and Bill Ivy, the Ossa was 45 pounds lighter and its monocoque frame was much stiffer, giving it superior agility. The Yamahas swept the championship but, Herrero left no doubt that the little Ossa was quick and dependable. He finished seventh in the championship and claimed a third place in the final race of the season at Monza. He would once again take the 250cc Spanish National Championship. 1969 would be a big year for Herrero. He began the year winning his first Grand Prix at the opening race of the season in front of his countrymen at Jarama. After retiring from the German Grand Prix with mechanical problems, he returned with a victory at Le Mans. He followed this with third place at the Isle of Man TT, a considerable accomplishment considering his horsepower deficit on the infamous Snaefell Mountain Course. He triumphed again at Spa and was leading the championship points race when he was beset by bad luck. He crashed in the rain at the Ulster Grand Prix and suffered a broken left arm. Most observers considered his championship hopes dashed, but Herrero showed true grit by coming back to finish in a remarkable fifth place at Imola. At last race of the season in Yugoslavia, he held a one point lead in the championship. He started the race in the lead but crashed on the seventh lap, ending his championship hopes. He would finish third in the World Championship. He repeated as Spanish 250cc champion for a third consecutive year. Herrero got the 1970 season off to a promising start. Although, he retired from the first race of the season in Germany, he finished in second in France and took a victory in Yugoslavia. The Grand Prix circus then moved to the treacherous Isle of Man venue for the 1970 Isle of Man TT. Herrero crashed at the 13th Milestone (Westwood Corner) on 8 June 1970, losing control of his motorcycle on melted tar during the sixth and final lap of the 250cc Lightweight TT. Despite a previous setback at Braddan Bridge when he went up the slip road and crashed, breaking his windscreen, he had battled back up to third place. Stan Woods, who had originally been reported to have collided with Herrero, actually crashed while trying to avoid him. As a result of the accident, Woods suffered a broken ankle and two broken collar-bones. Herrero died of irreversible shock and from his injuries two days later. He was 27 years old. The cause of the accident was described by Stanley Wood as "may have been melting tar on the bend." His loss affected the Ossa factory so much that they abandoned racing altogether. Spain had lost one of their first racing heroes.

John WETHERALL(no pic available) 12 Jun 1970 - Isle of Man TT - Senior Race - crashed his Norton near Milntown Cottage on the approach to Ramsey.

Brian STEENSON - TT 17 June 1970, Isle of Man - (photo supplied by Denis Paineau taken at Le Mans 1970 GP). Brian Steenson was a former Grand Prix motorcycle road racer. His best season was in 1968 when he finished the year in ninth place in the 350cc world championship. In 1969, Steenson finished second to Giacomo Agostini in the Isle of Man Junior TT. He was killed while competing in the 1970 Isle of Man TT on his Seeley 500. He was 23 years-old.

(click to enlarge)
George COLLIS: IOM Manx GP - 1 Sep 1970 - George Collis was a well known endurance racer, winning first place in the 1969 Spanish 12-hour race at Jarama. He also competed in the Thruxton 500 and the Barcelona 24 hour races. George was seriously injured 250 Lightweight Manx Grand Prix. The crash may have been the result of a missed gear as he approached Handley's Cottage. Collis sadly died in hospital the next day.

- Pukekohe, New Zealand 17 Oct 1970 (no pic available)

Herbert ANGERMAYER - 1971 - Austrian-Motorcycle-Trophy , Ziersdorf, Austria (pic courtesy Helmut Ohner). Herbert was killed in a crash at Gettsdorf whilst riding a 500 Linto on the Ziersdorf public road circuit in Niederösterreich Austria.

Peter BIRCH: 1971 - killed in practice on his sidecar machine near Melbourne, Australia. Peter was a successful solo rider and sidecar passenger who competed in the TT and GPs in the 1960s.

Rusty BRADLEY - Daytona 200 1971. 1971 was Bradley's first shot at the Daytona 200. Bradley, on a new H1-R Kawasaki, got a great start and was fifth or sixth as the field streamed down the banking for the first time. "I was drafting Dick Mann in that race," Bradley's teammate Frank Camillieri remembers. "I was three feet behind him and bikes all around me, top gear, at 155mph. I remember seeing someone go sliding as we went into (turn) one, but I didn't know until later that it was Rusty." After the incident, Camillieri chose to never race at Daytona again.

Bradley seemed to be trying to make a late-braking move going into turn one. Racer Don Emde was directly behind Bradley when he fell. "I saw the whole thing. I remember thinking as we crossed the finish line that first time around to take it easy. We all had full gas tanks and there was a lot of traffic. I was behind Kel Carruthers as we went into turn one and I just tried to keep some space between us. That's when Rusty came by me. Basically he just got caught up in traffic as the field compressed going into the turn. Rusty ran right into Kel Carruthers, right at about Kel's seat. Rusty went over the high-side and just started bouncing." It happened on the first lap of the race.

Bradley was immediately transported to a local Daytona Beach hospital. It has been said that Bradley was wearing a poorly-made helmet and died of massive head injuries. According to his family, this is untrue. They state that he suffered both aortic and spinal cord damage to his neck in the crash, that there was no blood flow to his brain. The doctors were powerless to help Bradley. Hours after a crash in his first expert race, he was taken off life support.


Brian FINCH: (no pic available) - 9 June 1971 - IOM TT - Brian was killed during the 500 production race. He crashed his Suzuki 500 at Ballacraine following a brake failure injuring some spectators in the process.


Maurice JEFERY: (no pic available) - Senior TT 12 June 1971, Isle of Man - Welshman Maurice Jeffery was killed riding his Norton in the Senior race. He hit the curb and crashed at Rhencullen and died before he could reach hospital.

Christian RAVEL- Belgian GP  500 4 Jul 1971 - Spa-Francorchamps. Ravel lost control of his Kawasaki H1R  crashed at 240 kmh at Blanchimont. He was taken to Francorchamps' hospital but died shortly afterwards.  Christian Ravel was 22. In 1966 he won the 250 class of the French Motorcycle Championship, riding a Ducati and a Yamaha. The following year Ravel started his first World Championship event, the French GP held at Clermont-Ferrand.   In 1969 Ravel joined the Écurie Yamaha-Sonauto. Ravel was hired by Xavier Maugendre, the Kawasaki French dealer, to share a 500 Mach III motorcycle with Pierre-Louis Tébec in the 1000 Km of Le Mans. The couple won the race and Christian Ravel was signed up by Maugendre's Écurie Kawasaki-Baranne, as works rider for the next season, with Eric Offenstadt as team mate. In 1970 Ravel rode a Kawasaki H1R winning the 500 title in the French Motorcycle Championship.

Günther BARTUSCH - East German GP 1971, Sachsenring (pic here and here). Günter Bartusch from Freiberg, crashed riding a 300cc works MZ. He wasl on crutches when he started practice after a crash at Assen. He crashed on the first lap and was killed.

Des NOBLE - 17 Dec 1971 - Speedway solo rider, tragically killed at Claremont Speedway in Western Australia. (More pics here)

Ian HOG(no pic available) - 2 April 1972 - sidecar - Bathurst Australia - Mt Panorama -  TT race

Gilberto PARLOTTI - Ultra-lightweight TT 1972, Isle of Man (pic here). Gilberto Parlotti (17 September 1940 – 9 June 1972) was born in Zero Branco, Treviso, Italy and was an Italian motorcycle racer competing in the FIM World Championship between 1969 and 1972 racing with Benelli, Derbi, Morbidelli and Tomos motorcycles. During the 1972 Grand Prix motorcycle racing season, after winning the first two 125cc races of the season in West Germany and France, Parlotti decided to race at the 1972 Isle of Man TT Races to take advantage of his main championship rival Angel Nieto's absence from the Isle of Man Mountain Course.[1] While lying in first place on the second lap during the 1972 125cc Ultra-Lightweight TT Race held in heavy rain, Gilberto Parlotti crashed his 125cc Morbidelli motorcycle at the Verandah section on the A18 Mountain Road and died from his injuries. The death of Gilberto Parolotti helped bring about the end of the Isle of Man TT Races as a world championship event. After his death, his close friend Giacomo Agostini announced he would never again race at the Isle of Man TT Races because he considered it too unsafe to be a part of the FIM World Motorcycle Championship calendar. At the time, the Isle of Man TT was the most prestigious race on the world championship calendar. Other top riders joined his boycott of the event and by 1976, the event was dropped from the Grand Prix championship schedule. 

Hans-Jürgen CUSNIK - 16 Jul 1972 - Czechoslovakian GP  sidecars (passenger) 1972, Brno. Heinz Luthringshauser lost control of his BMW sidecar outfit and crashed into a pole. Luthringshauser was only slightly injured, Hans-Jürgen Cusnik died on his way to Brno hospital.
Hans-Jürgen Cusnik, 22yo, was from Kaiserslautern West Germany.

Renzo PASOLINI - - Italian GP 250 1973, Monza. Renzo Pasolini (18 July 1938 – 20 May 1973), nicknamed "Paso", was a popular Italian Grand Prix motorcycle road racer in the 1960s and late 1970s.

His unpredictable and unrehearsed racing style made him a crowd favourite. Pasolini's rivalry with Giacomo Agostini divided motorcycling enthusiasts, and while Pasolini's style brought mixed results (ultimately preventing him from winning a world title), it earned him a place in the hearts of many fans. Pasolini was born in Rimini, the son of a motorcyclist. He began his motocross career in 1958, after having shown great interest in boxing as well. A smoker and incorrigible party-goer, he was an uncommon athlete, as was his approach to corners while racing—a dangerous combination of balance and speed which always made him seem about to fall off his bike. After performing well in motocross, Pasolini focussed on road racing while remaining active in other sports to keep physical form. In 1962, he debuted with the Aermacchi 175cc, when his two first-place finishes ahead of Giacomo Agostini spurred their long rivalry. Pasolini took a two-year break from racing to complete his military service and, while stationed in Sardinia, he met his future wife, Anna, with whom he would have two children, Sabrina and Renzo Stefano.

Pasolini resumed his racing career in 1964, racing Aermacchi 250cc and 350cc bikes at the senior level. In the 1965 Italian championship, Pasolini, racing a Benelli, finished second to Tarquinio Provini in the 250cc class and third in the 350cc class behind Giacomo Agostini and Giuseppe Mandorlini. 1966 was a year of varying results both domestically and internationally; most notable was the final race of the Italian championship, which Pasolini won on the then-new four-cylinder Benelli 500.
With a more competitive bike, Pasolini was able to rival the best, and this marked the start of a string of epic confrontations with Mike Hailwood, then riding a Honda, and the revival of his rivalry with Agostini, an MV Agusta rider. The 1968 season saw him second to Agostini in the 350cc championship, after having earned the 250cc and 350cc Italian titles.

1969 brought mixed results, causing Pasolini to lose out to Benelli teammate Kel Carruthers in the 250cc world championship. New regulations in the 250cc classification for the 1970 Grand Prix motorcycle racing season limited the category to two-cylinder bikes, which prompted the Benelli team to concentrate on the 350cc class. After a miserable season, Pasolini left Benelli and joined Aermacchi, fresh out of a merger with Harley-Davidson. Much of the 1971 season was lost to testing the Aermacchi/Harley-Davidson 250cc bike, which took much longer in development than had been anticipated. The resulting bike was not superior to most, and a number of up-and-coming racers increased competition; among them was Jarno Saarinen, to whom Pasolini lost the 250cc world championship in 1972 by a single point. Pasolini lost his life at the Italian Grand Prix in Monza on 20 May 1973. The biker was not able to finish the 350cc race because of mechanical problems, withdrawing from competition with four laps to go, and fell during the first lap of the 250cc race. Jarno Saarinen, immediately behind him, was unable to avoid him and fell as well, causing a chain reaction ultimately involving twelve riders and resulting in Pasolini's and Saarinen's deaths. Much debate has surrounded the probable causes of the accident, with the most common explanation suggesting that a spill left on the track during the 350cc race (when Walter Villa's Benelli leaked on the penultimate lap, but the urge to collect championship points led the rider to continue racing despite the leak) likely caused the bike to slide. While it has been ascertained that race officials did neglect to order clean up of the track prior to the 250cc race—one rider, John Dodds, made his concerns known to authorities, only to be met with threats—Pasolini's fall and the damage sustained by his vehicle are consistent with an engine problem, likely a seizure of the pistons. 

In 1986, Ducati Motor Holding, then under the ownership of Cagiva, introduced the Ducati Paso, named after Pasolini and designed by Massimo Tamburini, co-founder of Bimota.




Jarno SAARINEN  - Italian GP 250 1973, Monza

In 1972 he won the World 250cc Championship and came 2nd in the 350cc class.

 In 1973 he won the Daytona 200. Jarno Karl Keimo Saarinen (December 11, 1945 in Turku, Finland – May 20, 1973 in Autodromo Nazionale Monza, Italy) was a Finnish Grand Prix motorcycle road racer. He is the only Finn to win a road racing World Championship. Early in his career Saarinen won the Finnish ice track racing championship. Saarinen was also an accomplished motorcycle speedway racer. He had studied mechanical engineering and thus could modify his bike in addition to riding it. For example, in order for him to ride using his "hang-off" style, he lowered the handle bars and angled them downwards at an extreme angle. Saarinen began his Grand Prix career during the 1970 season, at the age of 25. He would finish in a respectable fourth place in the 250cc class, despite missing the last three races to return to his engineering degree studies - before the DNF at the Finnish TT he was tied for second. In 1971 Saarinen competed in both 250cc and 350cc classes. Saarinen won his first Grand Prix that year, claiming the 350cc class in Czechoslovakia. He finished third in 250cc World Championship and second in 350cc. His success didn't go unnoticed as Yamaha signed him to ride its TD3 and TR3 bikes, then pre-production TZs for the 1972 season. Saarinen delivered as expected, winning the 250cc World Championship. He finished second in 350cc World Championship, giving defending champion Giacomo Agostini a strong challenge.

Yamaha developed a new, four cylinder, two-stroke 500cc bike for the 1973 season and chose Saarinen to ride it. Finally, Saarinen was ready to challenge Giacomo Agostini and Phil Read in the 500cc class with competitive equipment. Saarinen's 1973 season started amazingly well, as he became the first European rider to win the prestigious Daytona 200 race in the United States on a TZ350 against much larger-capacity opposition. Returning to Europe, he jumped to an early lead in the Grand Prix championships by winning his first 500cc race, then the premier racing, class. His win was also the first win for the new, four cylinder Yamaha. Saarinen went on to win the first three 250cc rounds and the first two of three 500cc rounds, but his bike suffered a broken chain in the third. It seemed he was on the brink of running away with these titles, with the opportunity to complete in the 350cc class if or when the 250cc title was certain. However, the 1973 season ended in tragedy. On May 20, 1973, the fourth Grand Prix of the season was held at Monza near Milan, Italy. Despite the installation of new chicanes for cars during the previous year's Formula One season (one was placed before the Curva Grande and one at Vialone), they were not used for motorcycle racing at Monza. The second-placed Renzo Pasolini fell in front of Saarinen. He couldn't avoid the fallen rider and the resulting crash caused a multiple rider pile up. In all, 14 riders were embroiled in the mayhem that resulted. When the dust cleared, Jarno and Pasolini lay dead with many other riders seriously injured.

Over the years, the crash has been subject to significant controversy. The original cause of the crash was attributed to a spill left on the track during the 350cc race when Walter Villa's Benelli began leaking on the penultimate lap. Race officials neglected to clean up the spillage prior to the 250cc race, and one rider, John Dodds, made his concerns known to authorities, only to meet with threats of ejection from the circuit by police. However, some articles have appeared showing photos of Pasolini's bike consistent with the bike having seized.Not only did this incident take the lives of the two top competitors, but after the race, the factory-teams of Suzuki, MV Agusta, Harley Davidson, and Yamaha all joined together to fight for better race conditions. Yamaha went even further by pulling out of racing the rest of the year to honour Saarinen's memory. However, only forty days later, three riders in a Juniors race were killed in the same turn. From that day until 1981, all motorcycle racing at Monza was banned. The tragedy saw the end of a racing regime which had not adjusted to changing times.

Jarno Saarinen's legacy continues to live on. There is still an active Saarinen fan club in Italy. The birth name Jarno became very popular in Italy of many newborn boys in the '70s. One of them is Jarno Trulli, the former Formula-1 driver. Saarinen remains the only Finn to have won a motorcycle road racing world championship, winning 15 Grand Prix during his career. In 2009, the F.I.M. inducted Saarinen into the MotoGP Hall of Fame.

 See tribute here:

Emanuele MAUGLIANI - Skofja Loka Road Race (SLO) 27 May 1973. Emanuele crashed near Stari Dvor, his bike careering into a spectator area.  Tragically Emanuele was killed in the crash as were five spectators. Coming only a week after the Pasolini/Saarinen crash this terrible incident caused much controversy over race safety. The Skofja Loka Road race was not used again.
Click on thumbnail to enlarge

John CLARKE - TT 2 June 1973, Isle of Man (no pic available). John was from Whittlebury, near Towcester, Northants, England. John at The Bridge at Union Mills in the Lightweight Production race whilst riding his 250 Suzuki T20 Super Six. The machine was believed to have seized. John was riding in his first TT, but, he had raced in the Manx GP in 1971 and 1972. In 1972 co-riding with Lyn Jenkins in the Thruxton 500 on the T20 he had finished 3rd..


Leo COMMU - rode GPs in 1972 and 1973, died at Tubbergen ,Holland -23 May 1973 - Leo's TD2 250 Yamaha contacted Adri van de Broeke's bike at speed. Leo crashed, was gravely injured and sadly died later in hospital.

Eric PINER:  (no pic available) - Lightweight Manx Grand Prix, Douglas Corner, Kirk Michael - 5 Sep 1973. Eric was from Southall, Middlesex.  

Tom GOODFELLOW: - Mallory Park 27 May 1973 - Nigel crashed in the 750 British championship race on a Dearden Norton at Devil's Elbow, Mallory Park. (no pic available)

Kim NEWCOMBE - Silverstone, 1973. Kim Newcombe (2 January 1944 – 14 August 1973), was a Grand Prix motorcycle road racer from New Zealand. Born in the town of Nelson, Newcombe grew up in Auckland, then moved to Australia (first Brisbane, then Melbourne) in 1963, and subsequently moved to Europe in 1968. He competed in the 500cc Grand Prix World Championship finishing second to Phil Read in the 1973 season.

Along with fellow racer, John Dodds, he developed a motorcycle using a two-stroke outboard motor designed by Dieter König. He and the König were the first to challenge the dominance of the MV Agustas after the departure of Honda from Grand Prix competition at the end of the 1967 season. In contrast to his main competitors, Newcombe was credited with the distinction of developing, building, maintaining, and riding the König machine in competition.

On 11 August 1973, Newcombe was seriously injured at a non-championship event at Silverstone at Stowe Corner. After taking his customary walk of the track prior to the event, Newcombe had requested that hay bales be positioned on the outside of Stowe Corner before the race but race officials refused, stating they were "not required". In the race itself, Newcombe slid off the circuit at that very corner, and collided with the concrete barrier. He died from his severe head injuries three days later. He was survived by his wife Janeen who was supporting him on tour, and their son Mark (aged four at the time).

Kim Newcombe's story was the subject of the award winning 2006 documentary Love, Speed and Loss directed by Justin Pemberton.

See tribute here:

Cal RAYBORN - died Pukekohe New Zealand Dec 1973. Calvin Rayborn II (February 20, 1940 – December 29, 1973 (aged 33)) was a top American motorcycle road racer in the 1960s and early 1970s. Born and raised in San Diego, California, Rayborn began riding motorcycles at an early age. He began his racing career in dirt track events in Southern California and in 1964, he began racing professionally in the A.M.A. Grand National Championship, a series which encompassed events in four distinctive dirt track disciplines plus road racing. Rayborn excelled at road racing, winning his first AMA national at Carlsbad, California in 1966. His prowess on road courses earned him a place on the Harley Davidson factory racing team. It was with Harley Davidson that he achieved his greatest success, winning two consecutive Daytona 200 victories in 1968 and 1969.[1] He also set two 1970 motorcycle land speed records. He accomplished a tremendous feat when he competed in the Trans-Atlantic Match Races in England in 1972.[2] The Trans-Atlantic Match Races pitted the best British riders against the top American road racers. On an outdated motorcycle with no experience on British race tracks, Rayborn won three of the six races.
At the end of 1973, it was apparent that the Harley Davidson team couldn't provide him with a competitive motorcycle, so Rayborn accepted an offer to race for the Suzuki factory. In late 1973, Rayborn travelled to New Zealand to compete in an auto racing event and to test ride a Suzuki. At the Pukekohe Park Raceway outside of Auckland, Rayborn was killed when he crashed after the bike's engine had seized, and his body slammed into a wall close to the track.
Rayborn was inducted into the AMA Motorcycle Hall of Fame in 1999.

David NIXON: 4 June 1974 - Glen Helen IOM Production TT. David crashed his Boyer Triumph Trident whilst placed second in the race and sadly died later in the day. Click on news item to enlarge. See also link to pictures of his bik

Phil HASLAM - Scarborough 7 Jul 1974. Phil Haslam was from Langley Mill, near Heanor, Derbyshire. He was famous for breaking the 100 mph barrier in the Manx Grand Prix. In fact in the 1973 Junior Manx, he lapped twice over the ton and set two practice laps at 102 mph. In 1973 he won the Grovewood award as one of the most promising riders of the season. He had started racing in 1969 with a 250 cc Suzuki production racer and soon became a consistent winner at club level. Died after crashing into a bridge on his Pharoah Yamaha TZ250  at Olivers Mount, Scarborough in June 1974. His bike faltered as he accelerated out of Mere  Hairpin. Phil raised his arm to indicate he was stopping when his handlebar was clipped by Derek Chatterton, sending Phil across the track and directly into the path of Steve Machin who hit Phil with tragic consequences.  

Vic WRIGHT - Scarborough 7 Jul 1974 - Vic Wright was from North Anston, Yorkshire. He crashed at Oliver's Mount when his 250 Yamaha seized during practice.  (no pic available)

James (Jim) FARLOW
- 13 Jul 1974, Billown, Manx Southern 100, Isle of Man - whilst riding his 250 Yamaha.  Jim Farlow crashed his 250 Yamaha at Church Bend during the first morning practice session for the Manx Southern 100 on Tuesday, 09 July 1974. He sadly passed away in hospital on Saturday, 13 July. Jim Farlow, from Belfast in Northern Ireland, was twenty-three years old.  Jim's brother George would become a champion rider in the 1980s, riding TZ250 and TZ750 Yamahas in Ireland, IOM and England. (photo kindly supplied by George Farlow)

Steve MACHIN: - Cadwell - 26 July 1974.  The "Lincolnshire Imp". He had 4 GP starts, debuting in the 1971 Dutch TT at Assen, finishing 7th in the 125 cc class on a Padgett Yamaha. He achieved two 5th places in the 1971 Ulster Grand Prix at Dundrod, Belfast, 350 and 250 cc classes. From 1970/72 he won the British Gold Star. During his career Steve raced Machin framed Yamahas. His brother Jack, built the Machin Frames. Steve Machin died testing his 250 cc Yamaha TD2 at Cadwell Park, after the gearbox seized on Park Straight.  Just 20 days before, he had won the 350 class at Oliver's Mount. During the 500 race on the same day Machin could not avoid Phil Haslam, who died in the incident. 

Werner GIGER: (April 17, 1949 - July 31, 1974) - was a Grand Prix motorcycle road racer from Switzerland. His best year was in 1973 when he finished in fourth place in the 500cc world championship. Giger was killed in 1974 during practice for a race in Hämeenlinna, Finland.

Nico van der ZANDEN: 7 Sep 1974 - Assen - killed on the last lap of the Formula 750 race when he crashed his Yamaha TZ750 on the last corner. (See full size pics at

Billie NELSON - (November 2, 1941 - September 8, 1974) was a British former Grand Prix motorcycle road racer. His best season was in 1969 when he finished the year in fourth place in the 500cc world championship. Nelson also passengered for Charlie Freeman on his Norton Manx sidecar racer in British and International races for a number of seasons in the 1960s. He was killed at the 1974 Yugoslavian Grand Prix held at the Opatija Circuit. Yugoslavian GP  250  (pic here and here and here). Billie Nelson (November 2, 1941 - September 8, 1974) was a British former Grand Prix motorcycle road racer.


Ray BARBER -3 January 1975 - Ray (23 y.o.) was a champion speedway sidecar passenger who was tragically killed when his sidecar, driven by Dennis Nash, spun and collided with 2 other sidecars at the Claremont Western Australia speedway track.  (See more pics here. Submitted by Ralph Taylor).

Peter McKINLEY: - TT 29 May 1975, Isle of Man

(photo by Graham Etheridge, Racebikepics). Peter McKinley crashed during practice for the Tourist Trophy at Milntown Cottage on a TZ700  Padgett Yamaha. 


Phil GURNER: - TT - 4 Jun 1975, Isle of Man. Phil crashed during the 1975 Senior Tourist Trophy. The accident happened at Milntown Cottage, in the same place where Peter McKinley was killed in practice.Phil was riding an over-bored Yamaha TZ350. 



Rolf THIELE - Dutch TT - 28 June 1975, Assen. Crashed his TZ250 Yamaha at "De Bult" with tragic consequences. 


Uschi FLEISCHER-SCHICK: 11 August 1975 -  Hockenheim - sidecar passenger killed after striking armco fence on last corner. Born on May 26, 1935 as Ursula Scheffler. Came to motorcycle sport from Berlin was in the early 1960s by her first husband, former DMV race and sports director Ralf Schick. A sporting highlight was a class victory at the legendary ADAC 24-hour race at the Avus on 4/5 May 1963.

(see for prints)

Ross BARELLI - 17 April 1976 - Suzuki RG500, Bathurst . "Rossco" crashed in practice for the 1976 Australian Motor Cycle Grand Prix, at Mount Panorama, Bathurst, New South Wales, Australia. Ross's Suzuki RG500 crashed from front brake failure on 16 April 1976 at 280 kph on Conrod Straight. He threw away the bike 100m before Murray's Corner but slid into the armco fencing.  Ross, 28yo from Mitcham, Melbourne, Victoria, Australia, was a popular racer who had previously won several Victorian and Tasmanian titles. 

Otello BUSCHERINI - ItalianGP 1976, Mugello (pic here and here). Otello Buscherini (January 19, 1949 in Forlì - May 16, 1976 in Mugello) was an Italian Grand Prix motorcycle road racer. His best years were in 1973 when he won two Grand Prix races and in 1974 when he finished the season in fourth place in the 125cc world championship. Buscherini was killed during the 1976 Nations Grand Prix at Mugello. He won three Grand Prix races during his career.

Paolo TORDI - ItalianGP 16 May 1976, Mugello. 

click on thumbnail to enlarge


Walter WORNER:  (no pic available) - TT 7 June 1976, Isle of Man. Walter was passenger to Siegfried Maier on a 500 Yamaha powered outfit in the Sidecar TT which crashed and burst into flames at Greeba Castle



Les KENNY - TT 12 June 1976, Isle of Man. Crashed in the 250cc Lightweight TT when his Yamaha seized at Union Mills.

 Pic from TZ350 and 250 website - by Chris Baker


Pat EVANS - Imola - 6 April 1977 - see photo tribute here. 

Pat crashed at 200 kph riding a Harris Yamaha TZ750 at the Tamburello corner of the 200 Miglia AGV Imola race

Mike PATRICK - Cadwell Park UK - 24 April 1977. Collided with another rider on Charlies Bend during Superbike Race.

(photo by Graham Etheridge, Racebikepics)

Hans STADELMANN - Austrian GP 350 1 May 1977, Salzburgring. Killed in controversial circumstances. Swiss rider Hans Stadelmann crashed when Franco Uncini fell and brought down Cecotto, Fernandez and Braun. Stadelmann crashed into the fallen bikes at speed. After Uncini's crash no yellow flags were displayed allowing Stadelmann to hit debris on the track. Even so no flags were shown. A number of riders stopped, grabbed the yellow flags and began waving furiously to warn of the risk. It took 8 more laps for the race to be stopped. After this debacle all the top riders of the 500 class refused to start the race. This disastrous race added to the tension with the FIM and raised rider concerns with track safety.

Poor quality but this video of the incident shows crash and shocking lack of track safety -

Johan BOSHOFF ("Bossie")- Kylami - 11 June 1977 - (entry contributed by Jon Ekerold). Johan Boshoff crashed his works BP Yamaha OW31 750 at Jukskei Sweep in Kyalami during practice for the Republic Trophy Races. He died in hospital in Johannesburg on 17 June 1977, aged 36.

Ulrich GRAF - Yugoslavian GP 50 - 19 June 1977, Opatija. Ulrich  crashed his Kreidler after suffering rear tyre failure. 

Giovanni ZIGIOTTO - Yugoslavian GP - 19 June 1977, Opatija. Zigiotto's Harley Davidson seized practice for the 250 class.  Giovanni was hit by Swedish rider Per-Edvard Carlsson who was following him. Ziggiotto passed away on 29 June 1977.

Photo by Roberto Cianfarani

Geoff BARRY - 25 Jun 1977 - Ulster Killinchy 150. He was leading the 1000 cc race when he crashed his 750 Yamaha at Tournagrough, a fast left-hander on the Dundrod circuit, near Belfast. The previous lap Barry had recorded the quickest Killinchy lap of 111.68 mph. 

Geoff Barry's most notable success was winning the 1000 cc class at the 1976 Ulster Grand Prix at Dundrod.

In 1977 he had ridden with Tony Rutter in the Honda GB endurance team and also alongside Kork Ballington and Stu Avant. Barry was also a development rider with Barry Hart's Sparton Phoenix project.


 (Photo by Graham Etheridge, Racebikepics)

George OATES: 20 August 1977 - George Oates, a sidecar driver, and his passenger John Molyneux were killed during the 1977 Ulster Grand Prix. They crashed their Kawasaki sidecar at Tournagrough, on the Dundrod circuit.
John MOLYNEUX: 20 August1977 - John Molyneux, a sidecar passenger, and his driver, George Oates  were killed during the 1977 Ulster Grand Prix. They crashed their Kawasaki sidecar at Tournagrough, on the Dundrod circuit.
Ivan HOUSTON: 31 August 1977 - crashed at Creg Willey's Hill during Manx Grand Prix Practice on his 250cc Yamaha.

Norman TRICOGLUS: 3 September 1977. Englishman Norman Tricoglus died in practice session for the Senior Manx Grand Prix after crashing his 500 Yamaha at Rhencullen.

Phil BOSCO - Croft 17 Sep 1977. Midlands rider Phil Bosco was killed at the North East Racing Club's British Championshipon his 750 Yamaha. 

The Motosport Memorial site notes that "Phil Bosco had won the Cadwell Conquerer Golden Helmet just nineteen days before his death. He was the fifth holder to be killed along with  Geoff Barry,  Peter McKinley,  Billie Nelson, all killed in racing accidents and Ken Redfern, who died in a road accident in 1973. Coincidentally the race in which Phil Bosco was killed was just the "Ken Redfern Trophy". Following a request of Cadwell owner Chas Wilkinson, the Golden Helmet, which was considered a jinxed trophy, was buried alongside Phil Bosco's body at the King's Norton Cemetery in Birmingham".


(pic courtesy - Graham Etheridge)

(Photo Copyrighted to Graham Etheridge, racebikepics.)
Piers FORESTER: 30 Oct 1977 - A former boyfriend of Princess Anne and a close friend of Prince Michael of Kent, Forester was a real playboy. Forester was a close friend of Barry Sheene. Sheene shared Forester's Chelsea flat for seven months following his 1975 Daytona crash. Piers crashd during a BRC Formula 750 race at Brands Hatch when he ran wide in Clark Curve and collided with the steel trackside barrier at about 120 mph. 

Graham WARING: - Oliver's Mount, Scarborough - Scarborough Gold Cup International - 10 Sep 1978 - Graham's Aunt, Rene Norton, has kindly supplied a photo of Graham (click to enlarge). Graham sadly died 2 weeks before his planned wedding. Graham Waring's bike seized coming into the start straight during a race.

Mac HOBSON - IOM TT - 5 June 1978 - Mac Hobson and his passenger Kenny Birch were killed during the first lap of the 1978 Isle of Man TT when their sidecar crashed at Bray Hill. 

Kenny BIRCH - IOM TT 5 June 1978 - on the opening lap of the 1978 Sidecar TT on the Isle of Man, Hobson hit a manhole cover on Bray Hill at high speed and crashed.  Both Hobson and his passenger Kenny Birch were killed in the crash.  Shortly after Ernst Traschel passed the crash scene only to crash further down the road killing the four times Swiss Champion Ernst Trachsel.

Ernst TRASCHEL - IOM TT 5 June 1978 - crashed his sidecar at Bray Hill in the same race that calimed the lives of Mac Hobson and Kenny Birch.


Mike ADLER:  (no pic available) -  Isle of Man - 9 June 1978 - New Zealander Michael Adler crashed his 350  Yamaha at Glen Helen.


John WILLIAMS - 12 August 1978 - Ulster Grand Prix - His best season was 1975 when he finished in fifth place in the 500cc world championship on a Yamaha. Williams won his only world championship race in 1976 at the 500cc Belgian Grand Prix. He was a five-time winner of the North West 200 race in Northern Ireland. Williams died from injuries suffered while competing in the August 1978 Ulster Grand Prix in Northern Ireland.

Ken ROADS - August 1978 Wanneroo Western Australia -Ken was tragically killed in a practice incident in which his sidecar outfit struck an armco railing beside the old pits area on the top of the hill at Wanneroo Raceway. His passenger, Andrew Clark was seriously injured and unfortunately lost an arm in the incident. Andy went on to run McCulloch's Suzuki in Victoria Park Western Australia.

More information on Ken's racing career can be found at this site

Tom HERRON - NW200 Ulster - Coleraine - 26 May 1979 - Superbike race (pic here). Tom Herron struck a lamppost at Juniper Hill. Tom Herron was 3 times winner of the Isle of Man TT and 5 times winner of the Ulster Grand Prix.

Brian HAMILTON - NW200 Ulster - Coleraine - crashed 26 May 1979 - 350cc race. 19yo Scottish rider Brian Hamilton was killed at Black Hill in the 350 race. (no pic of Brian available)

Frank KENNEDY - mortally injured 26 May 1979, University Corner, 1979, North West 200 Races, Superbike Race - Frank Kennedy, Kevin Stowe and Australian Warren Willing were all seriously injured in a multiple pile-up at the University during the first Superbike race - none of the three would ever race again, Frank Kennedy later died in hospital after lying in a coma for almost six months. (memorial submitted by Melvyn Irvine)

Ron TOOMBS - Bathurst Australia -15 April 1979. "Toombsie" as he was known by friends and fans, was a successful and popular Australian rider in the 1960s and 70s. Well known for riding the "Green Meanie" Kawasaki 750. He retired from racing in 1975, after crashing at Sydney’s Amaroo Park Raceway.  4 years later he made a comeback, at forty-six to the Australian GP at Bathurst racing a brand new Yamaha TZ 350F. This also was the first time in his career that he raced on slick tyress. He was believed to have suffered a heart attack before striking a tree on the Mountain. His death stunned and saddened the Australian motorcycling and racing community. A memorial plaque to Ron Toombs was placed above Forrest's Elbow on the Mount Panorama circuit  near where he was killed. 


Fred LAUNCHBURY  - 8 June 1979 Glentramman 1979 Isle of Man TT  Formula III 248cc Maico. Fred Launchbury had a shop in Raynes Park in London, selling Bantam racing gear. In 1967, on an ex-GPO Bantam fitted with George Todd's equipment and tuned by him, Fred was to come in 20th at an average speed of 73.9mph in that year's 125cc Lightweight TT.

Eric MORT - Killarney South Africa 1979/80? - riding Kawasaki fell and was struck by Ben Birk's GS1000 Suzuki - died 4 days later
(submitted by Richard Cooke) - click on image for larger size

Olivier CHEVALLIER - Le Castellet - 6 April 1980 (pic here and here). Popular rider who was killed in the Moto Journal 200 race on the Paul Ricard circuiat the "Verrerie" bend. Olivier Chevallier (born February 6, 1949 in Vendôme) was a former Grand Prix motorcycle road racer from France. His best year was in 1977 when he finished in sixth place in the 350cc world championship. His only Grand Prix victory came at the 1976 350cc Yugoslavian Grand Prix at Opatija. Chevallier raced motorcycles designed and built by his brother Alain Chevallier.

Alec DICK: (no pic available) - Bathurst Australia, Easter 1980 motorcycle races - 4 April 1980. During practice Alec lost control of his Kawasaki Superbike near the end of Conrod Straight and hit a hidden concrete culvert at high speed.  

Rob MOORHOUSE - Bathurst, Australia, 6 April 1980. Rob Moorhouse crashed during the Unlimited Grand Prix at the end of the Skyline and was killed when he slid at high speed under the metal armco barrier. The cause of the accident was attributed to a front brake line being incorrectly fitted and being abraided by the front wheel during the race.

Pic by Phillip C. Hall
Alex CAMPBELL: 25 May 1980 - Adelaide International Raceway - South Australia - sadly killed in his retirement race. Multiple Australian sidecar racing champion, competed at the Isle of Man and the Indonesian GP. (thanks to Brian Dunn for information) (pic -

Roger CORBETT: - IOM - 6 June 1980 (no pic of Roger available). crashed at Glen Helen during the Classic TT.

Mervyn ROBINSON -Northwest 200 at Mathers Cross - 10 May 1980. Crashed his Seeley framed 351cc Yamaha during the 500 race. 

Geoff FAWCETT - Cadwell 1980 - sidecar crash at Hall Bends  (date uncertain) (no pic of Geoff available).

Patrick PONS - British GP 500 1980, Silverstone (pic here). Patrick Pons (December 24, 1952 in Paris - August 10, 1980) was a Grand Prix motorcycle road racer from France. His best year was in 1974 when he finished in third place in the 250cc and the 350cc world championships. Pons became the first Frenchman to win an F.I.M. world championship when he won the 1979 Formula 750 title. In 1980, he won the prestigious Daytona 200. He was killed in 1980 at the British Grand Prix.

Christian LEON - died 8 Nov 1980 - testing a Suzuki at Suzuka in Japan. Christian was well known for competing in endurance events such as the Bol Dór and le Mans.

Malcolm WHITE - British GP Sidecars 10 August 1980, Silverstone. Killed after colliding with the sidecar of Yvan Trolliet going into Woodcote Corner

Pic supplied by Phillip Wain

Wallace COATES - killed at Kirkistown Northern Ireland - 30 August 1980
(no pic of Wallace available)

Michel ROUGERIE - Yugoslavian GP 350 1981, Rijeka (pic here and here). Michel Rougerie (April 21, 1950 in Montreuil-sous-Bois - May 31, 1981 in Rijeka) was a Grand Prix motorcycle road racer from France. His best year was in 1975 when he won the two races and finished in second place in the 250cc world championship behind his Harley Davidson team-mate Walter Villa. Rougerie actually scored more points than Villa that season, but because only the best six results of the season were counted, he lost the championship. He was killed in 1981 while competing at the Yugoslavian Grand Prix.

Ken BLAKE - Isle of Man TT, June 9 1981. Ken was killed during the 500 Tourist Trophy. His 350 Yamaha, fitted with a rear slick aquaplaned following a shower of rain at Ballagarey, five miles past the Douglas grandstand.  He achieved lasting fame on a Suzuki RG500 in 1976 when he beat MV World Champion Giacomo Agostini in the Australian Swann Series Australian 500 TT at Laverton Airbase. He made his European debut in 1978 on a works Honda at the Bol d'Or 24-hour race.  


Sauro PAZZAGLIA - during practice for the San Marino GP 14 Jul 1981, Imola (pic by Alois Ohner)


Alain BERAUD - Czech GP - crashed 30 Aug 1981, died 4 Sep 1981, Brno. Suffered brake failure during the race after crashing and restarting.

Dave POTTER - crashed 31 Aug 1981 at Oulton Park during a British Superbike Championship race. Died in hospital on 18 Sep 1981. Dave had won the 1972 British 750cc class on a Norton.  

Jock TAYLOR - Finnish GP sidecars 1982, Imatra (pic here). Jock Taylor (March 9, 1954 - August 15, 1982) was a Scottish World Champion motorcycle sidecar racer. John Robert Taylor was born in Pencaitland, East Lothian, and entered his first sidecar race at the age of 19, as the passenger to Kenny Andrews (1974). The following year he took part in his first race as a driver. Taylor was Scottish Sidecar Champion in 1977. Most of the races were held at Knockhill. He was British Sidecar Champion in 1979 and 1980 at Donington Park. In 1980, Taylor and his passenger Benga Johansson won 4 races, and finished on the podium in all seven events. He collected the only "Did Not Finish" of his sidecar TT career on the famous Isle of Man circuit in 1979. He went on to become a four-time TT winner. Two years later, Taylor and Johansson raised the sidecar lap record at the Isle of Man TT to 108.29 mph (ca. 175 km/h), a lap record which stood for 7 years. In the 1982 Finnish Grand Prix, held in Imatra under very wet conditions, Taylor and Johansson's bike slid off the road and collided with a telephone pole along the course. The emergency services were removing him from the wreckage when a second sidecar team slid into them. Taylor was killed in the second accident. He is buried in the cemetery at Pencaitland, and a memorial to him was erected in the village in December 2006. A memorial also stands in Beveridge Park, Kirkcaldy, next to the old motorcycle racing circuit. One of Taylor’s sidecar outfits is on permanent display at the Donington Grand Prix Collection in Leicestershire, England.

John NEWBOLD - NW200 Coleraine Ulster 1982 (pic here and here). John Newbold (December 14, 1952 in Jacksdale - May 15, 1982 in Coleraine) was a former Grand Prix motorcycle road racer. His best season was in 1976 when he finished in fifth place in the 500cc world championship riding a Suzuki motorcycle. Newbold won his only world championship race in 1976 at the 500cc Czechoslovakian Grand Prix. He won the 1978 North West 200 race in Northern Ireland. Newbold died after crashing at the 1982 North West 200.

Iwao ISHIKAWA - French  GP 500 1983, Bugatti - on Tuesday 29 March 1983, Loris Reggiani and Iwao Ishikawa collided at the Virage de la Chapelle of the Bugatti circuit. Iwao died of his injuries.

Michel FRUTSCHI - French  GP 500 1983, Bugatti - Michel crashed at 220 km/h in lap 5 of the 500cc race of the French Grand Prix.  His head struck a fence pole and was taken unconscious to Le Mans Hospital where he died  on 3 April 1983.

(pic courtesy Toni Volz)

Guido PACI - Imola 10 April 1983 - crashed at 240 km/h into the outside wall at the Villeneuve corner in Imola and was struck by his own bike, on the 5th lap of the 200 Mile race. (See another pic here).

Rolf RÜTTIMANN - Yugoslavian GP 125 1983, Rijeka -  crashed at about 160 km/h into the pit guardrail at Rijeka Circuit, Yugoslavia, during  the 125cc race of the Yugoslavian GP held on 12 June 1983.

(no pic of Rolf available)

Bob SMITH - Oliver's Mount Scarborough UK - 18 Sep 1983. After striking the fence in the hairpin Bob unfortunately was struck by other riders.

Neville HISCOCK - crashed at Killarney, South Africa 1983. Neville Hiscock (Born 27 March 1951; Died 13 February 1983 was a New Zealand motorcycle racer in the 1970s and 1980s. He raced competitively in New Zealand, Australia, and South Africa. Neville Hiscock along with his equally skilled brother Dave Hiscock dominated the competitive racing circuits in New Zealand and Australia and was just starting to make a name for himself internationally when he was killed in South Africa while racing. He was currently leading the race, when he fell and suffered severe head injuries. He died soon after never having regained consciousness. Neville was killed on February 1983, at Killarney, near Cape Town. Shortly after his brother Dave Hiscock retired from competitive racing, and continued to live in South Africa for a number of years. Neville and his younger brother Dave Hiscock grew up in Stokes Valley, a suburb near Wellington, where they both rode an old BSA Bantam in grass paddocks, and later perfected their skills on the infamous Rimutaka hill climb nearby north of Upper Hutt. Neville and Dave began racing in 1972 at the Gracefield street circuit in Lower Hutt on Commando 750s. Neville finished in fifth place and Dave finished eighth. Neville's notable achievements include winning the Australian Castrol Six Hour in 1981 with his team rider D. Petersen riding a Suzuki GSX1100 and completing 314 laps and winning the New Zealand Castrol 6 Hour while teaming up with his brother in 1982 riding a Suzuki GSX1100 Katana. He also came 2nd in the South African 6 Hour Race[4] which prompted Suzuki to offer him full sponsorship for his last season before he died. (pic by Richard Reeve)


Peter HUBER (pic courtesy Helmut Ohner) - British GP 500 - 31 July 1983, Silverstone. See below.


Norman BROWN - British GP 500 -31 July 1983, Silverstone. Norman Brown (1960–1983) was a professional motorcycle road racer. Brown was born in Newry, County Down, Northern Ireland where his father, Norman Brown senior, ran a public house: "The Star Bar", or "Brown's Bar", overlooking the Clanrye River and Newry Town Hall. Brown attended Newry High School. He won the 1982 "Classic race" in the Isle of Man Tourist Trophy (TT) and in 1983, he raised the TT lap record to 116.19 mph in the Senior Classic event for machines up to 1000cc. He was killed during the British Grand Prix at Silverstone on 31 July 1983. When it began to rain he slowed, apparently due to mechanical problems. With greatly reduced speed he continued the lap to reach the pits. After exiting the Stowe he held to the outside line and was passed by multiple riders before being hit by Swiss rider (Peter Huber), whose view was obscured by the riders in front of him. The race was not stopped until multiple riders decided to enter the pits voluntarily. Both riders died as a consequence of their serious injuries.

Jack MIDDELBURG - Tolbert Netherlands 1984 (more pics here and here). Jack Middelburg (Naaldwijk, April 30, 1952 – Groningen, April 3, 1984) was a former Grand Prix motorcycle road racer. Together with Wil Hartog and Boet van Dulmen, he was part of a contingent of Dutch riders who competed at the highest levels of Grand Prix racing in the late 1970s. Middelburg never earned a factory-sponsored race bike, yet managed to post some impressive results. He became the second Dutchman to win the Dutch TT in 1980, and in 1981 he pulled off an unexpected upset when he defeated the defending world champion, Kenny Roberts at the British Grand Prix at Silverstone. His best years were in 1979 and 1981, when he finished in seventh place in the 500cc world championships. Middelburg was the last privateer to win a motorcycle Grand Prix in the 500cc class. Middelburg was killed while competing in a road circuit race in Tolbert, Holland in 1984.

Jane LITTERICK: d. 1984 - Amaroo Park, New South Wales Australia - fell entering pit straight, hit the wall and was struck by following riders. Video of incident here.  Was being filmed for a documentary piece by a television crew when she was killed. A tragic event.

Kevin WRETTOM - Belgian GP 500 - 12 July 1984, Spa

Terry HASLAM - Assen Sidecar - 1984.  Terry Haslam was from Langley Mill, Nottinghamshire. Terry began to race after losing his road. He started racing a BSA sidecar outfit in 1976 before buying a Seymaz outfit in 1983. Terry and his passenger John Gainey crashed in the first practice session of the final round of the European Sidecar Championship at Assen, Netherlands on Friday 28 September 1984.  Terry Haslam died instantly, passenger John Gainey escaped with internal injuries.

Pic supplied by Phillip Wain)

Lorenzo GHISELLI - 1985 - Imola (pic courtesy Helmut Ohner). On the tenth lap of the first round of the Italian Motorcycle Championship held in Imola on Saturday 13 April 1985 Lorenzo crashed his Suzuki at over 250 kmh at Villeneuve turn, the same spot where Guido Paci was killed two years before.  Lorenzo sadly succumbed to his injuries on 28 July 1985.

Mark SALLE - Brands Hatch - Oct 1985. Born in 1957 in Barking, Essex, Mark began his career riding 250cc and 350cc Yamahas at his local circuits, Brands Hatch and Snetterton.  On Sunday 20th October, 1985 at the Brands Hatch Powerbike International, the final race meeting of the year. In morning practice, Mark fell from his RG500 Suzuki and although uninjured in the fall, he was unfortunately struck by an oncoming rider as he tried to cross the track to safety.

Gene McDONNELL - Irish champion, tragically killed 4 June 1986 IOM TT when he struck a pony which had been frightened by a helicopter and somehow got onto the circuit.

Nigel HALE - killed Manx GP IOM - 27 Aug 1986. Crashed at Sarah's Cottage, in practice. 24yo Nigel  came from Lisburn, Co. Antrim, Northern Ireland. He was riding a 250 EMC.

Neil ROBINSON - British champion, killed Scarborough 13 Sep 1986. Crashed at Quarry Hills in practice.  Neil was the British 250 champion for 1983. He then raced in GP's on a 125 and later on a 500. He won the world F1 championship in 1989.

Steve BULL - 9 May 1987 North West 200 Northern Ireland whilst riding a Yamaha TZ750
(no pic of Steve available)
Kaus KLEIN - German rider, killed at Rusheyhill, Dunrod - 15 August 1987 in the Ulster Grand Prix on his Bimota Yamaha
Darren BARKER - Speedway sidecar passenger injured in crash at Atwell Park Speedway, Albany, Western Australia on 2 April 1988. Darren sadly died in hospital on 17 April 1988 as a result of his injuries.
Kenny IRONS - killed on warm up lap of the British F1 race at Cadwell Park on 26 June 1988

Alfred HECK - French GP sidecars 21 July 1988, Le Castellet

(pic courtesy Toni Volz)

brian ferguson

Brian FERGUSON -  killed at AGHADOWEY Northern Ireland 18 September 1989
(click on pic to enlarge - thanks for pic to Graeme Ferguson)

Steve HENSHAW - IOM 1300cc Production TT 1989

Phil MELLOR - (British champion, killed IOM TT 1989)

Marco FATTORELLI:  30 May 1989 - sidecar passenger - tragically killed after Franco Martinel lost control of his Yamaha 750 outfit and crashed at Gorse Lea near Greeba.

John MULCAHY: 30 May 1989 - sadly killed at Barregarrow when he lost control of his 1300cc Suzuki sidecar outfit. (Thumbnail from photo by Richard Johnson)

Kevin O'BRIEN - 15 July 1989 - Fore Road Races, Junior race. Kevin O'Brien suffered front brake failure on his Yamaha during qualifying which lead to his fatal crash.
Sam MCCLEMENTS - killed 1989 - Carrowdore 100 Northern Ireland

Ivan PALAZZESE - German GP 250 1989, Hockenheim. Iván Palazzese (2 January 1962 – 28 May 1989) was an Italian born Venezuelan Grand Prix motorcycle road racer. In 1977, he became the youngest person at the time to stand on a Grand Prix podium, when he finished third behind Angel Nieto and Anton Mang at the 125cc Venezuelan Grand Prix at the age of 15.

Palazzese had his best year in 1982 when he won two 125cc Grands Prix and finished the season in third place, behind Angel Nieto and Eugenio Lazzarini. He was killed in a racing accident at the 1989 German Grand Prix at the Hockenheimring. Palazzese was closely following Andreas Preining when the latter's motorcycle engine seized and abruptly slowed, causing Palazzese to collide with Preining and subsequently crashed. While Palazzese was picking himself up off the ground, he was struck by riders Bruno Bonhuil and Fabio Barchitta who both crashed. No marshals or doctors intervened. It was fellow rider Virginio Ferrari who stopped his bike and first came to Palazesse's aid but, Palazzese was already dead having sustained massive chest injuries. He was 27 years old. There is a monument erected in his honor in the Italian city of Alba Adriatica, where Palazzese was born.

Eros MANFREDINI - 250cc European GP, Rijeka Grobnik 1990, lost after a terrible pile-up and fire in first corner.
(Photo by Foto Oliver)
(Forum post:

Gerold FISCHER - 1990 St Wendel

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