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Safe, Happy, Fast. The story of Team Stelmar and the 2004/5 Global Challenge Yacht Race Hardcover – 29 Aug 2006

7 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Hardcover: 168 pages
  • Publisher: Grosvenor House Publishing Ltd (29 Aug. 2006)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1905529627
  • ISBN-13: 978-1905529629
  • Product Dimensions: 15.2 x 1.3 x 22.9 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 3.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (7 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 3,379,861 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

3.7 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

4 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Donkey boy on 23 Feb. 2007
Format: Hardcover
This is an important book. There have been quite a few chronicling amateur sailors' experiences of the challenge race, but this is the only one I know of which tells the story of the 04-05 race, which was of course the last one there will ever be, and perhaps the best in terms of excitement.

And yet the story is told in such a different way from all the others written about this subject that I have read. It begins where it should, right at the beginning of the campaign, going on to describe the relationships between the crew as they formed, and later faltered in some cases. This personal twist pulls no punches, and really allows the reader to feel as if they are on board Stelmar, experiencing all the highs and lows along with Richard and the team.

SHF is a ripping read- what happened to those guys on leg 2 of the race was just crazy. In many ways I think the author is too modest about the way they raced back into contention before disaster struck again. Add to that a few tugs on the heartstrings and there's something for everyone. The prose is bold and punchy, like a Challenge 72' blasting downwind, with the author's sense of humour subtly coming across through the "summing up" statements he sometimes adds after a descriptive passage. Nice touch.

I would recommend this book to anyone, no matter what prior knowledge of ocean yacht racing they have. The explanations included flow nicely into the story, and are pitched just right so as not to patronise hardcore yachties.

Definitely an essential read for anyone contemplating a journey of this type: this book will tell you what it's REALLY like to race around the world with a bunch of relative strangers.
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4 of 6 people found the following review helpful By biker7921 on 2 Mar. 2007
Format: Hardcover
having been a part of the build up to the challenge, with all the highs and lows that it produced, to read the book brought it all flooding back, it was a very enjoyable read, with giggles, roars of laughter and even a few tears as i recounted the joys and sorrows of this exremely tough race. a very well written book which in turn makes a very good read. if you're an adventurer yourself or prefer to do your adventures from your front room, this book is a must read.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Ideal for the fast and furious of the racing world, hence my buying it as a gift for a yachting fan
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5 of 10 people found the following review helpful By Scooby on 9 Jan. 2007
Format: Hardcover
Aspiring to do the Global Challenge yacht race myself one day I've

always taken a great interest in any material on this subject. I've

followed the races on the website, watched on TV and read all the books

I could find, but this one is just awful.

Safe Happy Fast describes the authors experience of what is a

fascinating adventure yet this tale is dull, spiritless, flat, and is

written appallingly.

Rather than the expected excitement we read of uninteresting moans,

grumbles and dislike for other crew members in a manner normally

associated with a school playground. There is no story; you keep waiting

for it to start but it never does. It's like watching the intro for a

film and after 90 minutes the titles roll, the lights come up and it's

the end.

And then there's the writing style. I'm a great fan of these type of

experience tale books written by amateur authors, but this style

varies between a juvenile attempt at Mills & Boon and 'note taking'.

Most of the book is written in a form of disjointed statements;

sentences as paragraphs that don't flow and are difficult to read. If

ever there was an example of the need for a ghost writer then this is

it.

I was not only disappointed, I would go so far as to say this is the

worst book I have ever read.
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