Rolf Steinhausen

Rolf Steinhausen (born July 27, 1943 in Nümbrecht) is a German former motorcycle racer, winner of two Sidecar World Championships.

Rolf Steinhausen
Born (1943-07-27) July 27, 1943 (age 76)
Motorcycle racing career statistics
Grand Prix motorcycle racing
Active years1972 - 1989
First race1972 French Grand Prix
Last race1989 Czechoslovakian Grand Prix
First win1974 Belgian Grand Prix
Last win1979 Belgian Grand Prix
ChampionshipsSidecars - 1975, 1976
Starts Wins Podiums Poles F. laps Points
64 10 22
Isle of Man TT career
TTs contested18 (1973-1981)
TT wins3
Rolf Steinhausen and Sepp Huber at Nürburgring in 1976

Steinhausen made his debut in motorcycle racing in 1961. After a few incidents, in 1964 moved on to the sidecar class, driven also by his friendship with the four-time World Sidecar Champion Max Deubel. Deubel recognized Steinhausen's talent and gave him one of his sidecars.

Having started with the sidecar powered by BMW in 1972 Steinhausen decided to use the engines of König, four-cylinder two-stroke of powerboat origin. The new engines allowed the German to build a sidecar lower and with better aerodynamics. In that year the German also made his debut in the Grand Prix motorcycle racing World Championship, where he came tenth in partnership with Werner Kapp, achieving a best result of fourth place at the Austrian GP.[1]

The following season Steinhausen was 6th in the World (alternating passengers, Karl Scheurer and Erich Schmitz),[2] getting his first podium finish (third in the Sidecar TT[3]). For the '74 season, the German made a new chassis with the specialist Dieter Busch. With the new sidecar Steinhausen won his first GP (one of Belgium) and was fourth in the World (alternating two passengers this year too: Scheurer and Josef Huber).[4]

The 1975 saw Steinhausen (paired with Huber) graduate to Champion of the World, thanks to three wins ( Austria, TT and Belgium).[5][6] That '75 was also the first title for a two-stroke sidecar. In 1976 Steinhausen is reconfirmed champion (winning again the same three GP as the previous year)[7] and the 500cc Sidecar TT.[8]

The '77 season saw Steinhausen favorite for the title, but he did not do it, for various engine problems. From the French GP Steinhausen changed to a new engine from Yamaha and a new passenger (Wolfgang Kalauch), which ended the season in 4th place with a win in Czechoslovakia.[9] Remembered for the Belgian Grand Prix, where the German marked the lap record at 200.520 km/h.

Despite winning his third Sidecar TT,[10] he had an anonymous 1978, finishing in 14th place in the world championship,[11] the 1979 season saw Steinhausen fighting for the title of the category B2A, finishing in 2nd place behind the Swiss Rolf Biland.[12] That '79 title was one of the last competitive seasons for Steinhausen, whose career ended in late 1989, having won two German sidecar titles (1986 and 1987).

After retiring Steinhausen has become an entrepreneur, running a trucking firm. He is father of current sidecar racer Jörg Steinhausen.[13]


  1. ^
  2. ^ "MOTO-GP-classements 73-SID". Retrieved 2014-06-15.
  3. ^ "Race Results - The official Isle of Man TT website". Retrieved 2014-06-15.
  4. ^ "MOTO-GP-classements 74-SID". Retrieved 2014-06-15.
  5. ^ "MOTO-GP-classements 75-SID". Retrieved 2014-06-15.
  6. ^ "Race Results - The official Isle of Man TT website". Retrieved 2014-06-15.
  7. ^ "MOTO-GP-classements 76-SID". Retrieved 2014-06-15.
  8. ^ "Race Results - The official Isle of Man TT website". Retrieved 2014-06-15.
  9. ^ "MOTO-GP-classements 77-SID". Retrieved 2014-06-15.
  10. ^ "Race Results - The official Isle of Man TT website". Retrieved 2014-06-15.
  11. ^ "MOTO-GP-classements 78-SID". Retrieved 2014-06-15.
  12. ^ "MOTO-GP-classements 79-SIDa". Retrieved 2014-06-15.
  13. ^ "Offizielle Website des Steinhausen Racing Team". Archived from the original on 2013-12-12. Retrieved 2014-06-15.

External linksEdit

Sporting positions
Preceded by
Klaus Enders
With: Ralf Engelhardt
World Sidecar Champion
1975, 1976
With: Josef Huber
Succeeded by George O'Dell
With: Kenny Arthur and Cliff Holland