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Formula 1: All The Races By Roger Smith

Release date: 07th March, 2013
Publisher: JH Haynes

List Price: 35.00
Our Price: 22.40
You Save: 12.6 (36%)
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The inside flap describes Roger Smith's monumental work as a 'labour of love' and your reviewer can only conclude that Mr Smith is deeply, head-over-heels in love with Formula One. In just its second edition, All The Races has become the sport's equivalent of football's Sky Sports Yearbook, a remarkable achievement.

However, unlike football's statistical encyclopaedia, All The Races benefits from a) being printed in colour throughout and b) presentational clarity. Smith has created an easy-to-follow template which enables his readers to compare like-with-like, quite a feat considering this enormous tome spans 62 years.

The fun began at Silverstone in 1950 where Nino Farina took the inaugural chequered flag. There were only seven races that year and the championship developed into a duel between Farina and Juan Manuel Fangio who made his intentions clear by leading all 100 laps of that season's Monaco grand prix. But it was Farina who overhauled Fangio in the final race to take the first F1 driver's crown.

Smith's enthusiasm for his subject is evident when one reads of the incredibly close contests in 1964 when John Surtees snatched the title on the final lap of the last race. In a similar scenario twelve years later, James Hunt beat Niki Lauda by one point following a season in which Lauda had led from the very first race.

In what could easily have developed into a series of dry, meaningless lap times, vehicle speeds and cumulative driver points, this book's well-designed layout and liberal use of colour ensures that its appeal is maintained from first page to last. One final word of praise is due to Alain Baudouin's marvellous illustrations which provide a pictorial history of F1's development, from Farina's Alfa Romeo 158 to Sebastian Vettel's Red Bull-Renault RB8.

Roger Smith has produced a fantastic F1 guide, but All The Races is more than a book of statistics. As the cover says, it's a labour of love - and it shows.



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