Formula 1 Fanatic, by Koen Vergeer
Formula 1 FanaticHardcover, © 2003 Bloomsbury UK, ISBN 9780747562146

We all know that Formula 1 is the pinnacle of motorsport – and those who’ve ever been sucked in by its indescribable mix of noise and speed, circuits, technology and personalities. Heroes are made and broken, drivers become legends, cars become fabled. And yet a murkier side exists and occasionally rears its head: injury and death.

Formula 1 Fanatic recounts one man’s obsession he has had since childhood, recalling the ‘gods of speed’ from the 1970s, and observing how the sport has evolved from the amateur to the professional, commercial entity it is today.

Vergeer – a Belgian journalist whose work here is ably translated – brilliantly interweaves recollections from his own childhood and combines them with well-researched accounts of the lives (and sometimes deaths) of his heroes during this time.

Coupled with excellent accounts of some of the all-time great battles that have captured the fans: Senna and Prost, Schumacher and Hill; the book reads elegantly and simply.

This isn’t just your typical ‘history of Formula 1’ book, which are a dime a dozen in many bookstores and rarely of truly brilliant quality. This is much more personal, much more real, and it is all the better for it.

Using our unique ‘Chequered Flags’ rating system, we award Formula 1 Fanatic


Formula 1 Fanatic is available via some booksellers and Amazon.

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Richard Bailey

Founder & Chief Editor at MotorsportM8
Hasn't missed a Grand Prix since 1989. Has a soft spot for Minardi. Tattooed with 35+ Grand Prix circuits.