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Autobiogs of racers

Posted: Wed Apr 03, 2019 10:34 am
by bikermike
I'm working through a lot of these at the moment (mainly as the end-of-run paperbacks are as cheap as a magazine and handy train fodder).

For people who do such interesting things in interesting places, they're a bit dull aren't they?
I read the Hutchy one, and it virtually glossed-over his massive injuries. The McGuinnes one was OK, but everyone was a good bloke (or not) and it never really got to him.
So far, the best I've read is Ron Haslam's (found in a charity shop).


I wonder if it's because it was written after he stopped riding and when Leon was riding - when you race you don't think about stuff, you do it. Maybe afterwards he's had more time to think about the whys/motivations etc. Plus there's nothing like having a kid to make you think more about how your actions look to a third party.


Any recommendations?

It is funny, F1 and motor-racing in general produces reams of good books, but I've only ever found Matt Oxley to produce interesting books about bike-racing (as opposed to books that are interesting as they are current or contain interesting facts). And of course the stuff on here... *crawls*

Re: Autobiogs of racers

Posted: Wed Apr 03, 2019 9:11 pm
by Tumi
I have read a few. Most of them are generic and quite boring. The one about Barry Sheene by Parrish and Harris was slightly above average I think.

Re: Autobiogs of racers

Posted: Wed Apr 03, 2019 11:52 pm
by speeddog
Rossi's is enlightening.

Doubt it's available in either paperback or cheap....

Re: Autobiogs of racers

Posted: Fri Apr 05, 2019 2:47 am
by kenup283
I too enjoyed Rossi’s book, Oxleys Fast stuff as well. I thought Stoners book was good too, I understand some may not have but I didn’t really expect to learn any secrets which probably made it fall short for many.


Some others that may intrest and can get reasonable price, Arron Slight you don’t know the half of it , and Kenny Roberts Techniques of motorcycle racing, not really a bio but can get a used copy for not too much

On car front I’ve been meaning to pick up a Nigel Mansell book at some point, recently picked up Mark Donahue The Unfair Advantage, and Bruce Mclarean From the Cockpit, which are good so far.

Re: Autobiogs of racers

Posted: Sun Apr 07, 2019 11:00 am
by AntG23985
Jamie Whithams book is brilliant.

Michael Dunlops book is a decent read, if a bit brash. McGuinness's was a good book. I enjoyed Guy Martins first book even if he is a marmite character. Phil McCallens book was enjoyable too. Also not an autobiography but David Jefferies bio was very well written with some funny stories in there. Hislops autobiography is a good book.


Away from bikes Damon Hill, Nigel Mansell, Colin McRae and Jenson Button books are all worth reading. The James Hunt bio is worth reading too.

Ones to avoid

Hutchy
Foggy
Toseland
Rea

Re: Autobiogs of racers

Posted: Mon Apr 15, 2019 3:16 pm
by bikermike
cheers all
All of Matt Oxley's stuff is good. ~He's about the only motorcycle writer who's stuff I will buy without stopping to think about it. Not seen an autobiog yet though, eh Matt?

I shall follow up on the reccos.

Hutchy's was dire, which is a shame because the stuff he has suffered and survived is immense. But I suppose if he'd spent more time thinking about it, he'd not have got back on the bike.

(It's not just riders - I'm reading a series of articles by Adam Millyard, and it's all a bit "and then I just welded the crank together out of two spares"...)

Re: Autobiogs of racers

Posted: Thu Aug 15, 2019 7:21 pm
by AntG23985
Shane Byrne and Michael Rutter have both got books coming out sometime soon.

I'm looking forward to both of those, both very experienced riders who have raced in various series with varying degrees of success.

Re: Autobiogs of racers

Posted: Mon Nov 11, 2019 6:17 pm
by sioux zookeeper
hey there,i've read loads too,all much of a muchness ( but then are they all the same type of driven people/)but i enjoyed niall mckenzies most.

Re: Autobiogs of racers

Posted: Fri Nov 15, 2019 2:11 pm
by bigm2706
I really enjoyed Casey Stoner's Pushing the limits. It was very interesting and entertaining.