Dennis Lashmar
Page updated 14-May-2011

Photo available from FoTTofinders

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. See picture right>. The Manx was also ridden by Vincent Davey Snr a couple of times during his short racing career.

In 1948 Dennis and Vincent had been demobbed from the Parachute regiment after serving with 6th Airborne Div in the difficult situation that was, and is, Palestine. Read about the situation Dennis, and many other young men, faced here:

His family owned Lashmar's theatre and travel ticket agency next to the Palladium in London. (The business is still going, though it's in Camden now.) He lived in Stanmore, near to the motorcycle business of Rex Judd where he became a good friend of Stan Pike, who was running the service department. Dennis bought a Vincent HRD and “used it to it's full potential” to quote Rex Judd's son, Peter. Stan was tuning and racing Rudges and another member of Judd's staff, who was an ex-HRD employee, helped Stan prepare the Vincent for Dennis, which involved a lot of weight saving.

His first race was at Dunholme in October 1948 for the BMCRC Hutchinson 100. Trying too hard, chasing Harrold Daniell on a Lancefield Norton, he ended up in a field of crops. Travelling at 80mph he eventually came out back on the circuit and finished 15th! Harold must have been impressed because he lent Dennis his own Featherbed for a few races.

This picture shows Dennis celebrating the TT win at the 1949 BMCRC Dinner Dance. L to R: Roland Pike, Geoff Duke, Vincent Davey Snr, Lashmar with tray, unknown and Marian Kuhn.

Dennis went on to win the 1949 1,000cc Clubmans TT on his Pike prepared Vincent. Running out of petrol was a worry. Afterwards, he admitted that the irksome restraint of travelling slowly to reduce petrol consumption was worthwhile, even though it did rob him of a high-speed blind round the mountain course. Later that year he competed in the Manx GP Junior race on an AJS, finishing 13th.

In 1951 he competed in three TT events, his best result being again (lucky) 13th in the Senior on 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 prepared by Stan's brother, Roland. BMCRC's tribute read “Dennis was a regular competitor in our race meetings and rarely missed a social function. His happy-go-lucky manner never left him whether he was enjoying a hard-fought race or wrestling with a recalcitrant machine in the paddock, and his dashing style of riding often placed him amongst the leaders, even though their models might be faster. With his death Bemsee has lost one of its keenest members, a genuine private owner who rode for the sheer joy of travelling fast.” He is buried at Harrow Weald Cemetery.

  • Apparently, he appeared in a short film in which he gave a hilarious portrayal of a rider journeying to Brands Hatch. Does anyone have a copy or know where it could be obtained?

If you have further details of Dennis's career or would like to add memories, stories and/or pictures, please contact us.