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The Brawn Story: The Man and the Team That Turned Formula 1 Upside-down Paperback – 1 Jul 2010
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About the Author
Christopher Hilton, one of Haynes's top-selling and most respected motorsport authors, has written over 30 books, including authoritative biographies of Ayrton Senna and Michael Schumacher.
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We have quotations from each driver and Ross Brawn after virtually every practice/qualifying session and race in 2009. Most of these are in anodyne PR speak. What were their real feelings, how did Jenson psyche himself up for the penultimate GP of the year in Brazil, etc?
The author has forgotten that five British GPs took place at Aintree between 1955 and 1962. There are also a number of typos.
In summary I found this a disappointment.
So it must be a book about the Brawn GP Team and its forebearers Honda and BAR. A book about the politics and financial muscle needed to avoid the outright closure of the team. That would have been a great book if it told the whole truth behind those teams, the real reasons for their relative failure. But no. There are a few highlights but again nothing new or really revealing.
And then the book assumes the form of a season review. That was the old hunting ground of Christopher Hilton so no surprise that this is the best part of the book. But in spite of Hilton being competent at it, there is nothing in it that a bloke that has `Autocourse' or `The Official Season Review' (and I have both) doesn't already know.
This is the kind of book that brought Haynes to its knees. A hastily written hack job to profit from the pre-Christmas rush, that was quickly remaindered and ultimately alienated the real motorsport readers for being unfulfilling. Not the best work from the late Mr. Hilton and a wasted opportunity to make a book on one of the most influential man (for better and for worse) on Formula One of the nineties and the noughties.
This is not a biography of Ross Brawn however so if you wish to discover more about that man then I am afraid we will all have to wait until he either releases an autobiography or someone comes along and pens his remarkable story (something that would be on my list of want books).
What it is though is the race by race account of a great season, one that has reached a nostalgia factor already with the current domination of Red Bull and Sebastian Vettel, charting the against the odds success of a team that didn't exist only a few months before the start of the racing year and the breakthrough of Jenson Button and final glory of the great Rubens Barrichelo.
I really can not fault it, except perhaps that it lacks a conclusion, it would have been a neater ending had it charted the evolution of Brawn into Mercedes and the moving on of Button to McLaren and Barrichelo to Williams, however definitely five stars and one for the collection (I literally could not wait to read it every opportunity I got).
However, like many of this author's other efforts, I found it very disappointing. If you like reading through tedious race by race detail, lap times etc., all of which was in the public domain during the course of the season, then this is the book for you.
If you are looking for an insight into the human stories behind the Brawn team, give this a miss.
I found myself skipping through the book once we got to the race by race stage, and ironically picked up Jenson Button's 'My Championship Year' which was a much more interesting read.
All in all the story behind the Brawn team was a fantastic tale, but in my opinion, this book is disappointing.
The author could have done a much better job of telling the story between Honda's withdrawal, and the birth of Brawn GP.
...very little of which makes it into this book. Instead we get a brief skim through the team's creation; an overly long biography of Ross Brawn; and page after tedious page of race recaps - regardless of the fact that anyone with enough interest in F1 to buy the book will inevitably know 99% of what's described.
A hugely disappointing book, considering the wealth of material that Brawn GP offered.
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