Just before the Liverpool Ferry had docked in Douglas harbour I had met up with Bill Smith who was one of the crowd who get that particular ferry each year. Steve Murray and Mick Chatterton were two other "sailors" and when we all saw each other on the Pier Head we knew we were on our way to the TT.
On this occasion Bill told me he was supporting a German girl and since he knew that I could get by on a smattering of coversational german, he asked me to see if she needed "any help". I agreed and once I was signed into my hotel, went up to the Paddock to see if any help was needed.
Well, I found Margret, her tent, her two mechanics, and her Mobel Ducati and introduced myself.
I was most impressed, so I spent some time chatting falteringly about the TT, her plans and what she intended to do. It was during our chat that I noticed that she had only a thumb and little finger on her left hand. She told me she had lost the middle three fingers at work in a bandsaw. Margrets profession was as a Tischlermeister and designer in the family household furniture business.
Dipl.-Ing. Margaretha Lingen-Zanker
When practice started she pulled a glove on her left hand and I found that she was able to use the clutch with the two digits she had left. She put in some good lap times and the consequence was that my remit suddenly had "bodyguard" added for we were beating off the rampant lads with sticks !! Riders, mechanics and the media converged on Margrets HQ and I became the go-between arranging interviews, photo sessions and finding out who would entertain our group with an occasional meal rather than Margret having to go off "alone" into the sin capital of the Isle of Man.
Dipl.-Ing. M. Lingen-Zanker, Königsheide 78, 47877 Willich-Schiefbahn
Telefon 02154 - 484941, Telefax 02154 - 484943, E-Mail firstname.lastname@example.org