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Racing in the Rain: My Years with Brilliant Drivers, Legendary Sports Cars, and a Dedicated Team Hardcover – August 15, 2006


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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 400 pages
  • Publisher: David Bull Publishing (August 15, 2006)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1893618714
  • ISBN-13: 978-1893618718
  • Product Dimensions: 8.7 x 1.3 x 9.4 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 2.8 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (20 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,437,009 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

About the Author

John Horsman graduated with honors from Cambridge University in 1958, with a master's degree in mechanical sciences (engineering). After serving in the Royal Air Force, Horsman apprenticed with David Brown, and proceeded to Aston Martin as a project engineer. He became an assistant to the managing director, John Wyer, in 1961. In 1964 Hormsan followed Wyer to Ford Advanced Vehicles Ltd., where he was responsible for the GT40 program. J.W. Automotive Engineering was created after the Ford program ended, and Horsman became director of the company and chief engineer. He went on to manage the Gulf Racing Research Comapny, which was an outgrowth of JWAE, and later moved to America to run the Mirage program for Grand Touring Cars in Phoenix, Arizona. He now lives in Tucson, Arizona, with his wife, Janet.

Customer Reviews

4.9 out of 5 stars
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See all 20 customer reviews
Makes you feel like you were there!
AZFAST1
Fantastic book , very detailed and indepth look at the history of the engineer behind the Gulf team through the legendary years of production racing.
advtracing
This is the finest book on sports car racing I have ever read.
Gary M. Gudinkas

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

13 of 13 people found the following review helpful By D. Michael Cook on October 30, 2006
Format: Hardcover
This book is definitely a 5-star addition to the growing collection of books about sports car racing in the late 60's and early 70's. I "grew up" in this era and didn't realize until much later what an amazing time it was for racing. I've got the 917 books by Morgan and by Hinsdale. I have the original "Excellence was Expected" by Ludvigsen, and I recently bought Vic Elford's excellent autobiography and Jo Siffert's biography. Heck, I even bought Keyser's "A French Kiss with Death" about the making of the movie "LeMans." "Racing in the Rain" ranks among the very best. It is loaded with 400 pages of behind the scene stories and is packed with tremendous photogaphy, including two previously unpublished ones of the famous "Horsman tail" for the 917 and a fascinating story of how it came to be in that pre-computer diagnostic era. Aerodynamic designs through brains and clever observation instead of computer analysis. Uttlerly fascinating and great reading. If you're a true road racing fan, you must add this book to your collection!
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12 of 12 people found the following review helpful By Joline Albaugh on October 15, 2006
Format: Hardcover
This is probably one of the best books ever published on motorsports of this era. John Horsman has included great technical details on the Aston- Martins, Ford GT-40s, Porsche 917s, and GTC Mirages in this book that cannot be found elsewhere. Also interesting are the inside explanations of why certain races were won or lost and the ever- changing rules of the sanctioning bodies. Personal anecdotes of drivers, team members, and of racecar development work make interesting reading.

Altogether a valuable reference work and a well- told story of what professional racing was like. Good work, John! by Neil Albaugh
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12 of 13 people found the following review helpful By William I. Brown on January 25, 2007
Format: Hardcover
I've had the distinct honor of reading and collecting motorsports-related literature for almost 40 years. John Horsman's book "Racing in the Rain: My Years with Brilliant Drivers, Legendary Sports Cars, and a Dedicated Team" easily ranks in the top-10%. How often we racing fans spend hard-earned money and countless hours attempting to glean something new from the pages of another racing-related book, only to fill rather empty from the effort. Further, errors of fact abound in many of the titles published over the last few decades (errors easily avoided with a decent editor). Far too often, stories are simply rehashed from older titles, with the same worn-out photos making title after title- not so with Mr. Horsman's book. I found myself exclaiming out loud every few pages after discovering a "fresh" take on something I'd never known, and again, I consider myself well-read. The drivers who were "there", as well as mechanics, and rival team members, will find all sorts of revelations in this book, as well as the secret(s) to John Weyer's / Horsman's successes with the GT 40, 917 and Mirage. Horsman goes down a path seldom taken by authors- namely, calling the shots as he saw them (warts and all), including the mistakes he and others (by name!!) made, as well as the "good" calls / decisions. Some may find the inclusion of specific details as to lap times, set-ups, engine specifications, etc. not terribly necessary, but these truly make the book all the better. I'm one of many knowing the history of the great races and their associated drivers, but have always wished to be schooled in the more technical while reading; Horsman accomplishes this- and more. His recollections on the greats- Redman, Bell, Ickx, Rodriguez, Siffert, Hobbs, etc. are alone worth the modest price of the book.Read more ›
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful By David Hebb on November 12, 2007
Format: Hardcover
Far too many "Three Star" or "Four Star" books are given a "Five Star" rating, but John Horsman's, Racing in the Rain, truly deserves five stars because it is one of less than a handful of automotive racing books that is absolutely first class in informing the reader, and doing it elegantly, of both how and why some racing cars win and others just compete. I put it along side Laurence Pomeroy's, The Grand Prix Car, and Karl Ludvigson's, Mercedes-Benz Racing Cars, as the best of the genre.
Horsman has the direct personal experience and engineering expertise to know and understand what went on in the sportscar racing world from the late 1950s through the early 1980s, a period that coincides with the golden age of prototype sportscar racing. In this era, Aston-Martin, Ford, Porsche, and Mirage battled with Ferrari, Matra, Alfa Romeo, Renault-Alpine, and other marques in endurance competitions that tested designers, teams, drivers and cars. Rule fixing or "performance balancing" was not part of the racing scene then: it was a tough, honest, win-or-lose world, and John Horsman had an insider's view of it all, and, happily for us, provides a clear, well-written, and, most importantly, an informative account of what went on and why.
One learns, for example, exactly how much bhp and at what rpm a Ford engine produced and what its design weaknesses were and what measures were taken to turn an essentially production-car engine into a race-winning proposition, or what the drag and frontal areas of Mirage racing cars were and, thus, what speeds down the Mulsanne straight might expected, etc., and consequently why some cars won, others came close, or still others failed entirely.
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