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Georg Meier pushing BMW motorcycle number 49 at the Grandstand, 1939 TT (Tourist Trophy)

Date(s): 1939

Scope & Content: Note the eagle and swastika on Meier’s leathers.

In 1939 the Germans made a concerted effort to win the Senior Isle of Man Tourist Trophy (TT) as a demonstration of German superiority. It was one of a number of sporting events (1936 Berlin Olympics, world heavyweight boxing title) exploited by the Nazis for propaganda value.

Georg Meier was born in Bavaria in 1910 and trained as a motor mechanic before joining the Bavarian State Police, and later the German Army, as a motorcyclist. Meier only rode twice at the TT, in 1938 and 1939, both times for BMW. In 1939, he stormed to victory aboard the supercharged Kompressor motorcycle. The win was a great propaganda coup for Hitler, and as a reward Meier was promoted to Lieutenant. ‘Motorcycling’ described him at the time as ‘the most brilliant racing motorcyclist Germany has ever produced’.

Meier survived the Second World War and later ran the BMW Allach plant and then built up Germany’s largest BMW dealership. He died in Munich in 1999.

See Unlocking Our Sound Heritage Interview (SA 0586) with Eva Kane for a description of the 1939 German TT team staying at the Falcon Cliff Hotel and Georg Meier's win and promotion.

Language: eng

Extent: 3¼ x 5¼ in

Item name: photograph

Collection: Photographic Archive

Level: ITEM

ID number: PG/6948/4

Subject tags : #TT&MOTORSPORT


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