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on 19 September 2012
As an early employee who went on to manage several departments at Lotus and had two successful spells in charge of Team Lotus, Peter Warr would have been the ideal author of the definitive story of Colin Chapman's empire. He had been working for several years on his memoir when he suddenly died in 2010, leaving a seriously incomplete manuscript.

By chance, businessman/historian Simon Taylor had recently interviewed Warr at great length for Motor Sport magazine. Taylor's tapes helped fill some, but by no means all, of the gaps, and the result is a very useful stitched-together account of a fascinating period of motor racing history.

Warr offers some splendidly nonconformist cameos of leading figures (mostly drivers) in the sport, and makes a good fist of justifying his consistently negative judgment of Nigel Mansell, of whom he once said that he would not win a Grand Prix "as long as my arse is pointing at the ground." The 31 GP wins that Mansell scored after leaving Lotus indicate that Warr's judgment was not exactly infallible.

The book contains some priceless insights into the character of Lotus founder Colin Chapman, whom Warr knew better than almost anybody. It is unfortunate that Warr held his old boss in such esteem that he was evidently unable to bring the same incisive judgment to Chapman that he had lavished on Mansell. He offers not one word on the scandal which implicated the Lotus boss in the DeLorean scandal and resulted in a prison term for Chapman's closest business associate.

Incomplete though it is, this book offers priceless insights into the most turbulent era of motorsporting history. It is essential reading for anyone who lived through the era of giants like Clark, Graham Hill, Rindt, Fittipaldi, Peterson and on to Senna. Unsatisfying, yes, but Warr was closer to these people than any arms-length biographer could ever be.
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on 11 March 2012
A recommended read for anyone interested in Lotus, F1, or automotive history. Peter Warr was at the centre of some of the most momentous periods in modern motorsport, and his fluent and entertaining prose took me by surprise for someone whose first purpose was not journalism.

My only criticism is of it being a little light on background information about the mercurial Colin Chapman, despite Peter being so close to him for many years
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on 30 January 2012
At first glance of the cover of Team Lotus : My View from the Pit Wall I thought what no Glitz no Razzle-Dazzle and not even Gold on the Black and Gold J.P.S. Lotus driven by Ayrton Senna, just a black and white image of the author welcoming home his charges!
But on a second viewing you see the Pride and Joy of Victory on the face of Peter Warr, so emotional that colour is superfluous and the black and white theme then continues on into the personal insight both on and off the race track with all the Triumphs, Trials and Tragic Consequence he became aquainted with at the forefront of Formula 1.
The book is in itself a Catalogue of People, Places, Events and personal Photograph's that made up Peter Warrs intimate knowledge of the years he had at the pit wall, this is written with humour, knowledge and above all a warts and all overview of the various Formula 1 teams, with the people involved both socialy, competitively and also as a governor, from Brian the Broom Leighton who kept the factory tidy up to Bernie Ecclestone who kept Fromula 1 tidy and all in between are flesh and blood and not just a name in a book!
This book is to me like the Dickensian Character Oliver Twist it has left me wanting more!
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on 20 July 2014
Peter Warr was one of the most important guys in team Lotus for over thirty years. This was a man of vast knowledge and an eye witness to a lot of the more important events in Formula 1 of that period. So a book written by such a character must be good.

Well... This book is not good. The book is EXCELLENT. This is not an autobiographical book. This is a book about the others. The others are the other actors in the Formula 1 circus. And, I believe, by order of importance.

First and foremost Colin Chapman. The Guv'nor. The leading light of Team Lotus. In this chapter we can feel the respect and the admiration the author had for the man, and we can glimpse a Chapman that is usually ignored on other books about him or Lotus.

Than the mechanics. The usually unsonged heroes of the F1 world. A new perspective on Team Lotus, this time from the pits themselves.

And then the `piéce de resistance'. A chapter about the drivers. His opinions on Senna, Peterson and Rindt were to be expected. The opinion on Fittipaldi and Mansell surprised me a bit for being so blunt. Very amusing nonetheless.

The book closes with some thoughts on the engineers (no surprise there) and about Bernie Ecclestone. Two very good and informative chapters that shed some light on past and present events.

An excellent book. Pity that Peter Warr passed away while still writing this book. Who knows what other great stories were left untold.
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on 14 January 2012
Unhappily, this book has been published after the author's untimely death and it has an unfinished feel.
Warr was an intensely loyal individual, thus anyone looking for dirt is really wasting their time unless they are a Nigel Mansell fan.
There are some beautifully written passages interspersed with some mediocre observations and comments. Senna fans will love it but there is precious little fresh insight into the complex, fascinating, character of colin Chapman
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on 11 March 2013
Rekindled some thoughts and memories of dear friends and colleagues from past life. A very informative and personal reflection of personalities in F1 at that time, most of which I found myself agreeing with.
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on 15 October 2013
This book is packed with a plethora of fascinating stories and anecdotes from a man associated with the likes of Colin Chapman, Andretti, Mansell and Senna. Simply put It's a very personal appraisal of some of F1's biggest characters and refreshingly forthright.

I really enjoyed his comments on the people he had come across in F1 in particular his assessment of Nigel Mansell is a thinly-veiled assassination of the brummie and his well known character traits. Also some very interesting insights into Peterson and Fittipaldi - the former clearly one of Warr's favourites. And some excellent anecdotal material regarding his time with Ayrton Senna - in particularly the brazilian's propensity for financially wringing dry the teams he drove for.

Overall a wry, thoughtful series of observations from a true F1 insider and hence very worthwhile reading.
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on 24 July 2012
Pretty disappointed with this so called 'book'. To be honest it is not really much more than an extended 'Lunch with Simon Taylor' in Motor Sport. At approx 200 pages + some pics it is not exactly lengthy either.
It is actually a series of recollections about some of the characters Warr had worked with in F1, a handful lengthy (Chapman, 'Bernie' & Senna) others to varying degrees less so although at least he is honest in his views, especially about those he did not have a high regard for, including Mansell.
Simon Taylor probably fills in some of the more interesting 'Gems' but overall a disappointment for the money.
I rate it 3* in spite of the above because I found it a very absorbing read which I rattled of in more or less just one session because it really is a bit like an extended magazine article!
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on 4 March 2012
Some good bits in the book and some mediocre bits, a little bit of a disappointing read. Overall worth reading despite these comments
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on 20 October 2012
It's interesting and well written but gobsmackingly rude about Nigel. And if you don't know who used to work for Wolf Racing then borrow /buy the book. It'll surprise modern F1 fans.
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