The Women at the ISDT

Women Motorcyclists may not have been plentiful but they have taken a noticeable part of the ISDT throughout it’s history into the ISDE. Although a press article on the page dedicated to the 1913 ISDT demonstrates the ACU’s then aborr for women by indicating they were not eligible to compete it is clear within a few years that a dedicated section within the ACU had become established and the riders were well respected competitors although sometimes in a condescending way which still given the sentimentalities of the inter war years saw a lot of resistence by wider society to may aspects of womens rights within society.

A good example of how the motorcycle was seen as an opportunity for women to get out into the countryside around them for fun and recreation in charge of complicated machines is seen in a stunt undertaken by Raleigh, the now popular cycle company from Nottingham were once a popular motorcycle company. The most famous of Women Motorcyclists and ISDT Marjorie Cottle who rode for Raleigh commenced a circumnavigation by motorcycle of the British Isle in a competative advertising stunt to promote the suitability of motorcycles to women. The background to this feat is explained in the three following news cuttings reporting on the event.

image of scanned newspaper article ‘The Cornishman‘ 28 May 1924 about the proposed round britain motorcycle ride by Mr Hugh Gibson and Miss Marjorie Cottle

image of scanned newspaper article ‘The Western Daily Press‘ 12 June 1924 on the round britain motorcycle ride by Mr Hugh Gibson and Miss Marjorie Cottle announcing the meeting of the contra direction riders with Miss Cottle having ridden 1713 miles 194 yds.

image of scanned newspaper article ‘The Western Daily Press‘ 12 June 1924 on the round britain motorcycle ride by Mr Hugh Gibson and Miss Marjorie Cottle reporting the completion of the tour after 3,404 miles.

Marjorie Cottle a few years later wrote on her experiences from riding into a Raleigh guide book in a feature aimed at encouraging more women to take up motorcycling

image of scanned newspaper article providing a details of a Raleigh guide on Motorcycling part written by Marjorie Cottle 11 March 1925 ISDT 1925

Photo of Douglas Speedway lady rider Fay Taylour who swept World Speedway from late 20’s into 1930’s

Fay Taylour was especially well known in the world of Speedway where she never gave an inch to anyone, an all time great racer. Yu can read about her fascinating life in a Biography now available at Amazon.

Fay Taylour: Queen of Speedway – Brian Belton

Photo of Fay Taylour, seen here riding a 1929 P&M Panther in 1929 ISDT.

Photo of London Ladies Trial MC Club of 1932, (pic courtesy Dave Martin)

1925 ISDT

Photo of woman motorcycle entrant #52 Mrs E Foley at ISDT 1925

Marjorie Cottle

Photo of a famous lady, Marjorie Cottle with her Raleigh in the 1925 ISDT.

Photo: captioned Marjorie oils up – 22nd June 1925: Marjorie Cottle, one of three female competitors in the International six day reliability trials at Brooklands, oils up her bike before the race. (Photo by Topical Press Agency/Getty Images)

ISDT 1927

Photo – Mrs McLean at Longlands Watersplash ISDT 1927

The English women #39 #20 Mrs McLean & #79 who won the Silver Vase Trophy in ISDT 1927.

ISDT 1928

Photo of BSA Competitors #22 Mrs Miriam Anning at left with Marjorie Cottle & 250 BSA Empire Star at ISDT 1928

Photo: February 1928: Mrs B Painter competes in the International Six Day Motorcycle Trials in Yorks. (Photo by Fox Photos/Getty Images) ISDT 1928

Photo: February 1928: Mrs G McLean competes in the International Six Day Motorcycle Trials in York. (Photo by Fox Photos/Getty Images) ISDT 1928

ISDT 1937

Photo - The famous British woam rider, Miss M Cottle, has, as usual, to face a battery of autograph books. Also, as usual, she is riding a BSA. ISDT 1937 (Speedtracktales collection)

Photo – The famous British woman rider, Miss M Cottle, has, as usual, to face a battery of autograph books. Also, as usual, she is riding a BSA. ISDT 1937 (Speedtracktales collection)

Photo of Motorcycles #25 Marjorie Cottle 250 BSA #27 R Protiva 250 Jawa starting at Lakeside Llandrindod Wells ISDT 1937
Photo of #59 Ilse Thouret 245cc DKW the German lady entrant

Photo of #58 Ilse Thouret 245cc DKW the German lady entrant ISDT 1937 (Picture from Speedtracktales Collection)

Registration [IV-22756] then from Saxonia / eastern Germany, where DKW was located in the town of Zschopau, works support! Has this works DKW survived in the hands of a collector?

Photo Ilse ISDT 1937

Photo #58 Ilse Thouret on 248cc DKW ISDT 1937

Photo

Photo #58 Ilse Thouret on 248cc DKW gathers an admiring group of spectators, wearing a stunning white leather riders jacket ISDT 1937

Photo of rider #34 on a 250 DKW with Hamburg registration mark

A request to identify this rider has been hopefully resolved by A Halthaus who suggests it is Mrs Ilse Thouret however with no date or location sent we dont yet know which event it was. We know the bike is a 250cc DKW. George Todd has come part of the way to rescue us by advising HH 2100 is a Hamburg registration mark, (Hansa Hamburg), many thanks to George Todd. After checking our 1930 results collection #34 is not listed as being Ilse. Obviously if anyone can help us pin this picture down to a specific ISDT or other event will be one of our saviours.

ISDT 1939

#255 Marjorie Cottle rides in the 1939 ISDT (Technischen Museum Wien)

#255 Marjorie Cottle ascends an Alpine Pass ISDT 1939 (Technischen Museum Wien)

ISDT 1949

Image of scanned newspaper cutting with photo of Miss A Newell a woman competing in the ISDE 1949

1950 ISDT

Photo of Regular Lady Rider Molly Briggs this time on a Square Barrel Triumph,

Photo of #7 Mrs E R Lloyd 123cc BSA alongside #8 P Bakker of Holland 125 DKW at ISDT 1950

ISDT 1952

Photo of Olga Kevelos rode a superb Moto Parilla, retiring on the 3rd day at ISDT 1952. She was one of several lady riders in the event

Olga Kevelos was like many of the women of the sport, persons with very much larger than life personalities. She lived to the age of 85, when she died in 2009 she earned a very comprehensive obituary in the Telegraph

ISDT 1954

Photo of Lady rider #258 Molly Briggs on a Triumph twin at the tricky Brecon Beacons sector, trying to get past the grounded Francis Barnett of Irish entrant D L Martin at ISDT 1954

Photo of  (Courtesy of the Geoff Charles Collection – National Library of Wales)

I’m going to take a pot luck at this having just read a history of Women Trials riders that this is most likely to be Molly Briggs who is credited in the results sheet. If anyone can confirm this it would be nice.

Photo of (Courtesy of the Geoff Charles Collection – National Library of Wales)

Another possibly image of Molly Briggs

ISDT 1956

Photo of Russian Ladies Club Team #239 Osolina, Susowa & Scharapowa. ISDT 1956

Photo of Russian Ladies ISDT 1952

Photo of #239 Ms Irina Osolina ISDT 1956

ISDT 1961

Photo of rider Miss J Savage in ISDT 1961

Photo of #222 Miss J. Savage of the CSMA Team in ISDT 1961

Photo of Miss J Savage again attracting photographers in ISDT 1961

Photo of Miss J Savage on her Cotton in the British CSMA team in ISDT 1961

Photo of #211 Mrs Mary Driver on Slocombe’s entered 250 BSA in ISDT 1961

ISDT 1968

Photo of Mary Driver, working on her Greeves Anglian in ISDT 1968

photo of Mary Driver on the Greeves Anglian [SOO56D] ISDT 1968

photo of Mary Driver on the Greeves Anglian [SOO56D] in action. ISDT 1968 

Through out the history of off road motorcycling many women took up successful campaigns whilst unable to race on road circuits and the below excellent article covers the history of women in Observed trials

http://thevintagent.blogspot.co.uk/2008/08/reminiscence-of-lady-trials-rider.html

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