High Performance: When Britain Ruled the Roads by Peter Grimsdale
Hand Signed by Peter Grimsdale
Hardback 1st Edition
New & Unread
In January 1964 a team of tiny red and white Mini Coopers stunned the world by winning the legendary Monte Carlo Rally. It was a stellar year for British cars that culminated in Goldfinger breaking box office records and making James Bond’s Aston Martin DB5 the world’s most famous sports car. By the sixties, on road, track and silver screen the Brits were the ones to beat, winning championships and capturing hearts. Stirling Moss, Jim Clark and Paddy Hopkirk were household names who drove the sexiest and most innovative cars. Designers like John Cooper, and Colin Chapman of Lotus, dismissed as mere ‘garagisti’ by Enzo Ferrari, blew the doors off Formula One and grabbed all the prizes, while Alex Issigonis won a knighthood for his revolutionary Mini. The E Type Jaguar was feted as the world’s sexiest car and Land Rover the most durable. But before the Second World War only one British car had triumphed in a Grand Prix; Britain’s car builders were fiercely risk-averse. So what changed? To find out, Peter Grimsdale has gone in search of a generation of rebel creative spirits who emerged from railway arches and Nissen huts to tear up the rulebook with their revolutionary machines. Like the serial fugitives from the POW camps, they thrived on adversity, improvisation and sheer obstinate determination. Blazing the trail for them was William Lyons, whose heart-stoppingly glamorous and uncompromising Jaguars propelled a bruised and bankrupt nation out of the shadows of war, winning the fans in Hollywood and beating ‘those bloody red cars’ at Le Mans.
High Performance celebrates Britain’s automotive golden age and the mavericks who sketched them on the back of envelopes and garage floors, who fettled, bolted and welded them together and hammered the competition in the showroom, on the road and on the track – fuelled by contempt for convention.
About the Author: Peter Grimsdale has worked in TV on a wide range of programmes, from The Adam & Joe Show to Crimewatch and Big Brother and Dispatches. His first novels Perfect Night and Just Watch Me are thrillers inspired by his BBC assignments to Sri Lanka and secret filming in Communist Albania. High Performance - When Britain Ruled the Roads springs from a lifelong passion for cars. 'I didn't want to write a car book just for enthusiasts - I wanted to tell a true story about a band of brilliant, rebellious folk who happen to design cars, one that which the wider public might not have come across before, a piece of real social history which one way or another has touched everyone. Peter is married to author Stephanie Calman and lives in South London.
Format: Hardback Edition
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