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FRENCH RACING BLUE: Drivers, Cars and Triumphs of French Motor Racing (Racing Colours) Hardcover – July, 2009

4.8 out of 5 stars 4 customer reviews

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Product Details

  • Series: Racing Colours
  • Hardcover: 176 pages
  • Publisher: Ian Allan Publishing (July 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0711033692
  • ISBN-13: 978-0711033696
  • Product Dimensions: 10.1 x 0.6 x 10.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 2.2 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,438,082 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Format: Hardcover
FRENCH RACING BLUE: DRIVERS, CARS AND TRIUMPHS OF FRENCH MOTOR RACING covers the role of France in nurturing the sport of motor racing, discussing the early legends of the series, the effects of two world wars upon the racing industry, and using rare vintage photos from the Ludvigsen Library and portraits commissioned for this book to survey top cars and drivers. The result is a history highly recommended for any lending library strong in auto racing history.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
David Venables. French Racing Blue: Drivers, Cars, and Triumphs of French Motor Racing. Ian Allen Publishing, 2009. 176 pages.
Long the pioneers of motor sports, the French were the early adopters and innovators in looking for the ultimate battle between man and machine: the battle to go faster than man was ever intended to. From the earliest motor carriages to the heyday of Formula 1 racing, French manufacturers and drivers have been at the bleeding edge of technology, speed and dedication to the art and science of going fast. Recognizing this, David Venables uses a combination of easily readable, journalistic writing and rare and amazing photographs illustrating the glories and the tragedies of French automobile racing through the years.

In the relative scarcity of book selections for racing with a focus specifically on French motorsports, Venables doesn't disappoint. In it Venables adds a journalistic and human-centric focus to the book, while supporting his story with beautiful photographs of the cars and races which gives a somewhat unique approach to the subject. In this, the cars themselves almost become a background to the real drama of what goes on behind the scenes in the garages and later the boardrooms as well as on the road. Books have similarly focused more on the human story such as the famous "Cars at Speed" By Robert Daley, which almost novel like it its approach to the subject of Grand Prix racing's "golden age" of the early to mid twentieth century, but lacks the purely French focus of Venables' book as well as the coffee-table-book like beauty. Venables' book doesn't focus particularly one time period, and rarely gets into technical detail of the cars, unlike Anthony Blights rather narrowly focused "French Sports Car Revolution".
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
French Racing Blue is a fine book for those wanting to delve into the rich history of French motor racing. After all, it was the French at the dawn of the automobile who started car racing and competition.
The early days are the strongest points in this well illustrated book. David Venables goes the proverbial extra mile to detail the beginnings of car racing in France, with particular attention paid to the periods before both World Wars.
It is in the most recent triumphs of French motor racing, particularly in Rally cars, where the book falls down. There is but a cursory glance at the successes experienced by the Renault Alpinas of the 70's, Peugeot and most recently Citroen in rally racing. This was disappointing.
To be fair though, this is a very good volume to expand one's breadth of knowledge of the earliest days of motor sport in it's bithplace, France.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Not quite the story that is Italian Racing Red, but that has nothing to do with the book - just French racing history. The book is a valuable addition to my automotive library and will soon be accompanied by German Racing Silver and British Racing Green.
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