A MASSIVE 512-page hard cover book, described as an omnibus of Australian motor sport history, has been released by the Confederation of Australian Motor Sport.
The book, commissioned to celebrate CAMS’ 60th anniversary, has more than 1000 historic pictures and the most detailed documentation ever of the sport’s foundation, covering motor sport from its inception in 1904 through to the present day.
The tumultuous history of motor sport includes death threats to prominent administrators, the discovery of bugging devices in an executive’s office, bankruptcies, litigation, disqualification of international teams and the reversal of a world championship on the evidence of an Australian official.
Among its revelations are how V8 Supercars came into existence, how a quest to bring three world championships to Australia in one year broke the bank of the country’s largest car club, and how our greatest ever F1 driver got the nickname ‘Black Jack’.
It explains how then prime minister Malcolm Fraser caused the construction of the pit straight bridge at Mt Panorama, how a TV engineer in South Australia made it possible for the F1 World Championship to come to Australia and why Bernie Ecclestone thought it would be better to run the Grand Prix in England “with a few gum trees”.
“It is a must-read for all motor sport enthusiasts and a must-keep for all involved in the management of motor sport at any level,” CAMS chief executive Eugene Arocca said.
“It opens up on the personalities – the triumphs and trials – of some of the best drivers, officials and administrators, and covers events from the first ever motor race to the first Grands Prix.”
The book also provides insights never before brought to light.
“Incredibly, the Australian Grand Prix ‘ambushed’ the 1956 Melbourne Olympic Games,” Mr Arocca said.
“Stirling Moss, in a Maserati 250F, won the F1 Grand Prix at Albert Park and Betty Cuthbert won 100 and 200-metre Olympic Gold at the Melbourne Cricket Ground in the same week.
“It could never happen again, but in that time, which coincided with the birth of TV in Australia, two of only five outside broadcast vans at the Olympics were diverted to the Grand Prix.”
During the time of the book’s writing, 12 motorsport history-makers passed away, each providing interviews before their death.
The book is available from the CAMS book shop at camsshop.shopdesq.com for $99 inclusive of postage.