Book Review, Opinion

My Review of ‘Formula One: The Champions’ by Maurice Hamilton

“For any driver, you want to win anything you compete in – but the World Championship is the ultimate goal. It means greatness – but not just for the driver; it’s for you and your team. It’s an overwhelming moment when you finally do it. You suddenly think about so many things; the sacrifices that have been made; the support from your family; about what this means to so many people. And then it begins to sink in: Yes! You’re World Champion!” – Lewis Hamilton, 7-Time F1 Champion.

33 men in Formula 1’s 70-year history have achieved the status of a World Champion. In this book, author Maurice Hamilton (no relation) compiles each one’s story and legacy for its readers. I found ‘Formula One: The Champions’ incredibly insightful – it invoked a desire inside of me to learn more about the sport’s rich history and flamboyant personalities.

One of the things I enjoyed most about this book was learning about each racing driver – the past and present, the famous and the mostly unknown (to me at least). Each chapter went beyond their life stories and delved into their characters and raw talent. Chapters such as those on the pioneering Jackie Stewart, the colourful James Hunt and the analytical Alain Prost are favourites of mine.

Another thing I loved about this book was the absolutely stunning photographs, taken by father-son photographer duo Bernard and Paul-Henri Cahier. It was fascinating to see the F1 cars slowly evolve into what they are today, page by page.

Next to both the vivid photographs and gripping text included in each chapter is a quote by the driver about their World Championship. To end, I’ve included one of the best (in my opinion), below, said by the great Michael Schumacher;

“I was repeatedly asked what my predominant feelings were at that moment (crossing the line to win his first championship for Ferrari in 2000), and on no single occasion was I able to find the right words. I didn’t know what to do with this happiness.”

5/5 stars

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