Barry Sheene is arguably the greatest British motorcycle racing rider of all time. A chancer, lovable rogue and the leading sports star of his era, adored by the public and press alike, he won two world motorcycle championships in 1976 and 1977. He achieved iconic status by being involved in some horrific crashes and was dubbed 'the bionic man' on account of the amount of metal used to reconstruct his legs after a particularly bad accident. He later emigrated to Australia and became a leading commentator. He died of cancer in 2003. For the first time Barry's widow, Stephanie, and family have agreed to open up their personal archive to give an unprecedented insight into the two-time 500cc world champion. Via private photographs, memorabilia and letters, award-winning Times journalist and author Rick Broadbent will tell the story of a remarkable man in unprecedented fashion. Rick Broadbent will paint a portrait of one of the sport's most charismatic figures through the voices of the people who knew him best: his family, his fellow competitors, teammates and the many legends who have admired him from a distance in the years since his death. A celebrated motorcycle racing author, Rick Broadbent is perfectly placed to write Sheene's story and he will have exclusive access to the family archives and photographs. Published to mark the 40th anniversary of his second world championship win, this is the Barry Sheene story as told like never before by the people who knew him best. It delves deep into the family history to get inside the helmet and under the skin of an all-time sporting great.
Fifteen world championships in the 350 cc and 500 cc classes, 18 Italian national titles (175, 250, 350 and 500 cc), 311 victories in world championship races of which 123 were world championship counters and 10 wins in the legendary TT. That is the incredible record of Giacomo Agostini, achieved between 1962, the year in which he won his first race at Bologna-San Luca on a Morini Settebello, and 1977 when he took the win at Hockenheim on a Yamamoto in the 750 cc class. Agostini – just about everyone calls him Ago – was the greatest racing motorcyclist ever, and today he has decided to review his magnificent career again by bringing together the greatest, most significant photographs of his life in a book. The debut on the Morini, the golden years with MV and the less dazzling period with Yamaha, his experience as a team manager as well as his family, friends and his fleeting appearance on four wheels; these are the chapters that comprise this work, which has never previously been attempted.
'Moto GP is about the individual’s story, the battles between the individuals, the different personalities, the different men that are striving for one goal, to win the world championship'. Freddie Spencer, three-time world champion Since its earliest beginnings on public road courses to today’s purpose-built championship courses, Moto GP has always been about one thing: pushing man and machine to new heights of performance. Telling the story of how leading manufactures such as Yamaha, Honda and Suzuki, have strived to build the perfect machine, and detailing the incredible rivalries of such sporting legends as Kenny Roberts and Barry Sheene, Freddie Spencer and Eddie Lawson, Valentino Rossi and Jorge Lorenzo – to name just a few – Phil Wain uncovers the stories behind historic races, the innovations that made the best bikes on the grid and describes the infamous moments in which riders were made champions. Moto GP is a photographic celebration of the heroes, bikes and circuits that have defined the adrenaline-soaked world of motorbike racing.
This is the remarkable story of Barry Sheene, the cheeky cockney boy who grew up to become a sporting legend. He won the British motorcycling 125cc championship aged just twenty and twice became World Champion in the 500cc class, despite two life-threatening crashes. In an era when sport and its personalities rarely made it off the back pages, Barry Sheene crossed the bridge between sport and celebrity in a style that only George Best had achieved previously. Barry is an intimate and revealing account told by three people who knew him better than most. Steve Parrish, fellow bike racer and now BBC commentator, Nick Harris, who wrote and broadcast on all Barry's major successes, and Barry's widow, Stephanie. Frank and fascinating, Barry is an exclusive look into the extraordinary life of a charming and complex man.
Mick Walker has written about most of the world's classic marques and many of the sport's greatest riders, but the onset of a life-threatening illness persuaded him to pen this book through his own huge variety of experiences as a rider, dealer, importer, tuner, team boss, and author. Despite being an intensely personal story, The Ride of My Life is a wide-ranging look at motorcycling that will resonate with every enthusiast. For those who share Mick's passion for the Italian marques of the last half century, the book is required reading, but there is much, too, about machines from Britain, Japan, Germany and elsewhere. Mick has also packed the pages with characters he has known personally, including some of the all-time greats; Barry Sheene, Mike Hailwood, Carl Fogarty, Fabio Taglioni, Alejandro de Tomaso and Derek Minter - whose relationship with Mick is recalled.
Feel is the story of how a small-time boy from humble beginnings in Louisiana rose to the pantheon of greats, to win the 500cc and 250cc GP Championship in the same year – an historic achievement over three decades ago which has never been repeated. Growing up at the time of the assassination of Malcolm X and Martin Luther King, Freddie judged by feel, not by colour. Blind to prejudice and discrimination, he formed dynamic connections with people and events, but only years later during his racing afterlife could Freddie come to understand the true power of the things he learned. Spencer is an articulate and compassionate guide as he describes the thrill and horror of racing in an era when death was a perennial threat. He recalls in pin-sharp detail the frenetic high-octane racing duels with the ‘King’ Kenny Roberts, but also describes a parallel internal journey as he struggled to make sense of it all. Driven by a search for the personal fulfilment that comes through finding your purpose, Freddie’s story is a universal one. In its message of hope, Feel transcends its genre to offer a story for everyone. Part thriller, part philosophical self-exploration, it is a remarkably insightful account of what it is like to have it all, but wonder why. “For the first time I will talk about the traumas of my childhood, the contrast between the leaf fire burns, the mistrust and discomfort and the peace and purpose I felt when riding my bike. I didn’t tell my parents about something that happened to me. Why? I felt ashamed, but when I rode I felt connected to everything and the pain in my hand and heart would go away. It gave me the feeling of hope”.
Bill Ivy was certainly not only a great rider, but also a unique personality. He had a steely determination to succeed, an almost fearless courage, and a love of fashion and fast cars. Although only 5ft 2in tall, he more than made up for his lack of statu
For over 100 years the world's best motorcycle racers have pitted themselves against the gruelling 37-and-threequarter-mile Isle of Man Mountain Course at the annual event known worldwide simply as 'the TT'. The Tourist Trophy meeting - to give its proper name - represents perhaps the greatest challenge that the sport of motorcycle racing can offer. The top names in road racing - Collier, Wood, Duke, Hailwood, Agostini, Hislop, Jefferies, McGuinness, Hutchinson and the Dunlop dynasty - have all considered the pursuit of a Tourist Trophy to be the ultimate goal. From riding the earliest single-cylinder, belt-driven machines with outputs of under 10bhp, to coping with today's sophisticated four-cylinder machines giving well over 200bhp, generations of riders have risked their lives to satisfy the desire to go faster than the next man and to win a TT. In the process they have lifted lap speeds by almost 100mph. Exactly how that huge increase has been achieved is told within these pages, set against the background of the triumphs and the tragedies of the TT history. A comprehensive story of speed at the TT Races, superbly illustrated with over 200 colour photographs and maps.
Suspension is probably the most misunderstood aspect of motorcycle performance. This book, by America’s premier suspension specialist, makes the art and science of suspension tuning accessible to professional and backyard motorcycle mechanics alike. Based on Paul Thede’s wildly popular Race Tech Suspension Seminars, this step-by-step guide shows anyone how to make their bike, or their kid’s, handle like a pro’s. Thede gives a clear account of the three forces of suspension that you must understand to make accurate assessments of your suspension’s condition. He outlines testing procedures that will help you gauge how well you’re improving your suspension, along with your riding. And, if you’re inclined to perfect your bike’s handling, he even explains the black art of chassis geometry. Finally, step-by-step photos of suspension disassembly and assembly help you rebuild your forks and shocks for optimum performance. The book even provides detailed troubleshooting guides for dirt, street, and supermoto--promising a solution to virtually any handling problem.
In Breakfast of Champions, one of Kurt Vonnegut’s most beloved characters, the aging writer Kilgore Trout, finds to his horror that a Midwest car dealer is taking his fiction as truth. What follows is murderously funny satire, as Vonnegut looks at war, sex, racism, success, politics, and pollution in America and reminds us how to see the truth. From the Trade Paperback edition.
The Isle of Man TT - the world's most dangerous race - as seen through the eyes of Cummins, Martin, McGuinness and Dunlop. THAT NEAR DEATH THING is a life-affirming journey to the heart of the world's most dangerous race. The Isle of Man TT is a throwback to a maverick era that existed before PR platitudes and PC attitudes. WILLIAM HILL SPORTS BOOK OF THE YEAR-shortlisted author Rick Broadbent gets inside the helmets of four leading motorcycle racers as they battle fear, fire and family tragedy for a gritty sort of glory. Guy Martin is a tea-drinking truck mechanic and TV eccentric who 'sucks the rabbits out of hedges', but must now deal with the flipside of fame; Conor Cummins is the local hero facing a race against time as he battles depression and a broken body after falling down the mountain; John McGuinness is the living legend fending off the ravages of middle-age for one last hurrah; Michael Dunlop is the wild child living with one of the most remarkable legacies in sport. They tell their astonishing stories in a book that provides the most rounded, intimate, behind-the-scenes account yet of the last great race. Rick Broadbent has delivered the final word on the Isle of Man TT, one that really gets to grips with an event that continually pulls unsung riders and fans back year after year to witness That Near Death Thing.
Shortlisted for the William Hill Sports Book of the Year "A runner must run with dreams in his heart." Emil Zatopek. In the summer of 1952 Emil Zatopek became the king of the running world with an unprecedented distance treble at the Olympic Games in Helsinki. Together with his wife Dana, who won another gold medal in the javelin, they were the embodiment of sporting romance. Born on the same day, they were champions on the same day too. Yet in 1968 this affable but eccentric Czech solider was betrayed by his Communist paymasters and cast out into wilderness. Hidden from world view, monitored by the secret police and forced to live in a caravan in mining country, he became the invisible hero. 'Endurance' is the first biography to document the remarkable rise, fall and rehabilitation of a man voted the 'greatest runner of all time' by 'Runner's World' in 2013. It is also the story of a golden age of sport played out against a backdrop of Cold War politics and paranoia. From the London Olympics of 1948 to Czech concentration camps, this is an uplifting and harrowing story of survival. As Emil rises to global fame, his old coach is locked up and tortured by StB henchmen. Their diverging paths expose the fickleness of popularity and eventually cross again when Zatopek's world is torn asunder. All both men can do is endure. The running world of this era is brought to life by dramatic accounts of Zatopek's great triumphs, manifold records and a rich collection of characters vying to dethrone him. In Britain the sharp-tongued Gordon Pirie falls foul of the media as he becomes obsessed with Zatopek and adopts increasingly-masochistic methods; mild-mannered marathon champion Jim Peters begins a quest that would make "women weep and grown men lose their lunch†?. In France Alain Mimoun crawls from the bloody carnage of his war-time exploits to overcome racial snubs and become known as Zatopek's Shadow; and in the Soviet Union, the tragic figure of Vladimir Kuts is moulded into a brutal running machine at huge cost. Only Zatopek manages to bridge this East-West divide as a savage power struggle is fought in both the Olympic arena and in the corridors of power. Due to extensive access to those involved, including Dana herself, award-winning Times author Rick Broadbent has written a vivid history involving blood and guns and a love that sustained the cruellest twists of fate. From heady nights at White City to the brave resistance during the Prague Spring, this is a book that plants the son of a carpenter at the very centre of a revolution. Whether talking to his rivals on the track or Red Army troops as tanks roll into Prague, Zatopek's humanity shines through and carries all. With traces of 'Chariots of Fire' and Laura Hillenbrand's 'Unbroken', Endurance is both a wonderful love story and a landmark tale of hope and strength in the face of crushing opposition. "It's at the borders of pain and suffering that the men are separated from the boys." Emil Zatopek
The definitive life story of the seventies world 500cc motorcycle champion Barry Sheene - the Brit whose death-defying crashes and playboy lifestyle made him the most famous bike racer on the planet. Written by the only journalist to have ridden on the roads with him, this book features interviews with closest friends, team mates and former rivals. Sheene's story traces his humble beginnings through an apprenticeship as a part-time rider and full-time mechanic, to a works team racer, with a host of diversions in pursuit of the opposite sex. After being diagnosed with cancer in 2002 he shunned conventional treatments, preferring natural remedies, but died early in 2003. This is the complete portrait of perhaps the greatest circuit racer of them all.
This is the definitive story of Triumph, told through 130 years of its magnificent motorcycles. Created with support from Triumph and with a foreword from CEO Nick Bloor, The Art of the Motorcycle is a celebration of Triumph's most beautiful bikes, and an essential companion for any fan. With unprecedented access behind the scenes, the book tells the story of Triumph's motorcycles through the years, from the earliest models and much-loved classics to the most recent bikes. Features include: Entries on each of the greatest Triumph models Stunning photography throughout - including never-before-seen images Detailed technical information Early design sketches First-hand reports from the people who were there Other treasures from the Triumph archives With insightful, thoroughly-researched text, Triumph - The Art of the Motorcycle is the ultimate history of an enduring icon, told through its greatest machines.
The adrenaline-fueled, high-octane world of Formula One has created some of the greatest moments in sporting history. Its infamous circuits have played host to intense rivalries that have produced moments of tragedy and triumph that read like a film script. Since the 1950s, Bernard Cahier and his son, Paul- Henri, have been trackside capturing the drama of the Formula One Championships. Their stunning photographs chronicle both the changing face of the teams and their cars, from Lotus and Cooper to Williams and Ferrari, and of course the legendary drivers who have pushed their machines and themselves to the limits. Formula One correspondent Maurice Hamilton brings the stories behind these photographs to life; from the charismatic rivalries of Juan Manuel Fangio and Stirling Moss and the highly competitive Championship battles of Alain Prost and Ayrton Senna, through to the historic tales of Monaco’s winding course and the atmospheric crowds of Monza. With over 300 photographs – from the 1950s to the present day – all from The Cahier Archive and many previously unpublished, The Pursuit of Speed is the ultimate celebration of Formula One.
The full story of the racing two-strokes, from the companys fateful decision to go into motorcycle racing in 1954, right up to the 199s and the powerful machines being produced today. Contains interviews with key personalities and riders. Filled with both technical advances and racing successes.
Britain's most successful motorcycle road racer, ‘Rebel Read’, was never far from controversy. He frankly describes his life in the grand prix circus: the glamour, the danger, the money, the politics and the sex.
Ring of Fire is an insider's account of the acclaim, heroism and pressures of being a MotoGP racer. This is a world where manufacturers invest millions, and where a rider will emerge from a coma with shattered bones to get back on his bike to save his job and race again for the checkered flag. This covers the whole of the modern MotoGP era, at the center of which is the phenomenal Valentino Rossi. Ring of Fire charts his rise, fall and rebirth, detailing the dark side of his infamous rivalries with Max Biaggi and Sete Gibernau as well as his battles with the tax man and the media. This warts-and-all tale offers an insightful, behind-the-scenes look at what makes these riders tick, from double World Superbike champion James Toseland to warring Spanish heroes Jorge Lorenzo and Dani Pedrosa. Rick Broadbent introduces us, not just to the stars, but also to the officials, parents, doctors, team owners and fans who make up this white-knuckle sport. By turns funny, sad, shocking and uplifting, Ring of Fire brings us face to face with all those who are bonded by a shared love of risking it all at 200 mph.
Run over the everyday roads of the Isle of Man for over 100 years, the world-famous Tourist Trophy races have gripped the imaginations of successive generations of motorcyclists. From the earliest days of single-speed, belt-driven machines delivering 5 bhp, to the highly developed projectiles of today offering a fearsome 200 bhp, race fans have thronged the roadside banks and watched in awe as the best racing motorcyclists in the world rode the fastest machines of their day around the twists, turns and climbs of the 374 mile Mountain Course, all in pursuit of a coveted Tourist Trophy. This new updated edition covering the 2007 - 2012 races, reveals the event's colourful history through the high-speed activities of great riders such as the Collier brothers, Geoff Duke, Mike Hailwood, Giacomo Agostini, Steve Hislop, Joey Dunlop, John McGuinness and many others. It also looks at the machines and mechanical developments and race organisation, plus the financial rewards and commercial interests; setting them all in the context of the triumphs and tragedies of a great sporting event that has seen average lap speeds rise from 40 mph to over 130 mph. Written in an easy style, this book reveals the Manx TT's colourful history through its great riders, machines, mechanical developments and race organisation and is superbly illustrated with over 250 colour photographs.
Johnny Owen, the Matchstick Man from Wales, and Lupe Pintor, El Indio from Mexico, met for less than 60 minutes on September 19, 1980. It was Owen's chance to become the world bantam-weight champion, but the Matchstick Man was knocked out in the 12th round, spending 46 days in a coma before he died. The parallel lives of Owen and Pintor form the heart of this incredible story. Extensive interviews with the Owen and Pintor families have resulted in a moving, visceral book that resonates well beyond the boxing ring. Bonded by a shared dream, this story charts the lives of two boxers and two families, and reveals how, 20 years later, Owen's grieving father was reunited with the man who killed his son. Despite its running theme of loss, the tale of these two fighters is ultimately an uplifting story of forgiveness, and how the human spirit can overcome the most terrible troubles.