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The Toleman Story: Last Romantics in Formula 1 [Hardcover]

Christopher Hilton
4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
Price: 37.50 & FREE Delivery in the UK. Details
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Book Description

31 Oct 2009
Small, unfashionable, short of money and the last of their kind to become a force in Grand Prix racing. The story of Toleman is not only fascinating and improbable - it has never been told before. This was the team that took Ayrton Senna into Formula 1, to which he responded by creating a masterpiece of movement at Monaco. It is still talked about. This was the team that launched Derek Warwick, one of the most popular and accomplished men in British motor sport. This was the team that brought Rory Byrne, Ferrari's design genius, to sudden prominence. This was the team that enabled Pat Symonds, Renault's race tactician, to construct his career. And this is the whole story. Lavishly illustrated, the book retraces the narrative from the very beginning and covers the dramas, heartbreaks and triumphs of each racing season in detail. It is full of poignant memories never published before, as well as hilarious anecdotes and penetrating insights.

Product details

  • Hardcover: 208 pages
  • Publisher: Veloce Publishing Ltd; First Edition edition (31 Oct 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1845842170
  • ISBN-13: 978-1845842178
  • Product Dimensions: 2.3 x 25 x 25.3 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 92,624 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

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Product Description


"This tells the rags to riches tale of a family-run firm with no ambitions of greatness, just an old-fashioned idea of working hard and having fun. A terrific story." - Motor Sport"A great read." - Octane

About the Author

Christopher Hilton worked on the sports desk of the Sunday Express during the sixties and seventies, and the Daily Express until 1990, covering in his time Le Mans, Grand Prix races, and four Olympic games. Now a full-time author, he has had over fifty books published, covering a range of subjects from the Berlin Wall and the Mayflower to soccer and cricket. In motorsport, he has written biographies of many notable F1 personalities, including Nigel Mansell, Ayrton Senna, and Michael Schumacher, as well as a history of the first 100 years of Grand Prix. He lives in Sawebridgeworth, Hertfordshire.

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Customer Reviews

4.2 out of 5 stars
4.2 out of 5 stars
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
21 of 24 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Falls well short - a lazy effort 26 Dec 2009
I've been waiting for a book about Toleman for years. The only previous attempt was an excellent Kimberleys team guide from 1983 written by Bob Constanduros.
At last the full story is available in hardback, but this turns out to be a massive let down. The narrative of the pre-F1 years is really thorough and gives a great insight into the team's origins and philosophy, especially the refreshing naivety with which they went racing.
However it all gets glossed over a bit in the F1 years - 4 F1 seasons take up less pages and a lot of the details are glossed over. Most of the narrative seems to be based on recollections rather than facts, and many of the car photos are in the wrong order or placed against the wrong piece of text.
There is far more detail about the team in the respective versions of Autocourse, which is sad. This was a great opportunity to tell the whole story and pack it full of facts and figures but many are just missed out.
Noticeably absent are any details of revisions to the TG183, the launch of the TG184, the swap between nose and wing configurations and any serious race by race history of them. In this meaningful stage of the Toleman story there just isn't enough detail to keep a connoisseur interested. Oh for a chassis history or ANY car facts, figures, drawings etc.
This is a really lazy effort and a wasted opportunity. Save your money.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A better story to come...? 18 Jun 2012
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
As the previous reviewer has said, this does not give a 'race by race'guide. There are probably places on the web where one can find out this sort of information. This is instead a very condensed view of how the Toleman Group came to be in Formula One as a very small fish in a big ocean, the upstarts struggling against the odds. So it does not contain lots of facts and figures, but attempts to give an overview of what drove the directors of a car delivery company to set up their own racing team.
So, I would not say this book is a waste of money by any means - just be aware that you are buying the story of a quirky, unique little racing team, and not a long list of technical data on cars, or results, or lap times.
However, I can only hope that one day someone will write the REAL Toleman story - the story of the family, the business, the involvement in powerboats, the Branson connection, the complex characters of the men at the top, and the dreadful tragedies that followed. Now THAT would be some book....
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5.0 out of 5 stars The real last romantic of best F1 era! 26 Mar 2013
This book show what courage, genius, passion, lateral thinking and heavy foot can do in the golden era of F1.
I was a fan of Toleman: an original car, an original engine, great designer and a small team turned laughing into respect in the big team's faces.
I loved that carbon batmobile and that truck turbocharger....
And what about a certain Ayrton Senna?....
This book reminded me what was racing in the 80s.
Good choiche, nice pictures.
Just adding some technical drawings and it would be perfect.
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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Toleman story 19 Feb 2014
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
Arrived well packaged and on time. This book is excellent and brings back lots memories of races gone by and drivers.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
Amazon.com: 4.0 out of 5 stars  1 review
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars F1 History You Didn't Know 4 Mar 2014
By Alfa Male - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
If you want to know the origins of the current Lotus F1 team, or its predecessor, Renault F1, or before that, Benetton F1, this is the book for you. It is the story about a man with a little bit of money and a lot of ambition starting a Formula One Grand Prix team, which endures, albeit in another form, to this day. It is also the story of the team that introduced three-time world champion Ayrton Senna to F1. If you are a fan of F1 history, or just want to know more about the earlier days of the sport, this is a must read book.
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