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Put Me Back on My Bike: In Search of Tom Simpson Paperback


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 242 pages
  • Publisher: Random House UK (May 29, 2003)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0224061879
  • ISBN-13: 978-0224061872
  • Product Dimensions: 7.5 x 5 x 0.7 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 7.2 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #523,123 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Review

'The best cycling biography ever written' - Velo

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Described by Velo magazine as "the best cycling biography ever written," this is the definitive account of the life of Tom Simpson, Britain's greatest cyclist.

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

20 of 21 people found the following review helpful By PETER HEPPLESTON on February 14, 2003
Format: Hardcover
As a bike-mad teenager growing up in Doncaster, South Yorkshire, Tom Simpson was the closest thing to a childhood hero that I had. His racing exploits used to make the headlines in the local paper, and I went to the cinema to see the Movietone News reports of his Classic wins in Europe. On a gas-pipe special bike that was far too big for me I tore around the lanes thinking that I was almost as fast as Tom. Along with thousands of other naive bike racing fans I stood out in the rain the day he was buried in Harworth, and cried, and did not understand.
I read all the books and articles subsequently written about Tom, watched all the programs and videos, and over the years have been left with a cardboard-cutout impression of a talented, ambitious athlete who just tried too hard. Nothing wrong with that I suppose, after all, a man's reach should exceed his grasp. Now William Fotheringham's new book has added a whole new dimension to that flat cardboard cutout, and put real flesh and blood on the dry bones of Tom's story. Far more than a seedy drugs expose, the book puts the many aspects of Tom's character and the various pressures on him in his chosen career into perspective, and into the context of his life and untimely death. There is neither commendation nor condemnation of Tom, but he emerges from this book, as from no other book, as a real person, a real character, a real "lad".
I am now in my second childhood, and Tom is still my hero, and tears still come to my eyes when I think about him, but now I do believe I finally understand.
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on November 18, 2003
Format: Paperback
A quick and engaging book for anyone interested in professional cycling and a historical perspective on one of the most impactful events of TDF history. Written without judgement and very matter of fact regarding drug use and how the "wink and a nod" attitude about it was so pervasive in the early 1960's cycling scene.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Jim Couch on August 2, 2009
Format: Paperback
William Fotheringham has written what is certainly the best cycling biography of the many I have read. The book treats the controversial and tragic life of British pro Tom Simpson in an objective, and sensitive manner.

Fotheringham's Simpson becomes more than the mythical driven cyclist who died on the slopes of the Mt Ventoux. We see a full portrait of not only a talented and ambitious cyclist, but a husband, father, and complex human being. We get to know Simpson the person, not just the myth.

We also get more than just a glimpse at the world of professional cycling in the 60s, pre drug testing days. Just like his treatment of Tom Simpson we get a view of cycling that is more than the standard stories and myth. the treatment of cycling is also non-judgmental and sensitive, without hiding or covering up the facts.

The book is well written and engaging, certainly hard to put down. A great, if tragic read. I highly recommend it.
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