Post by David Lawson on Dec 27, 2013 5:07:11 GMT -5
"If You Have Come Second You Have Lost - Winning the World Championship with Jim Clark and other stories" is the rather cumbersome title to a fascinating book by Cedric Selzer.
This 2013 self published softback book with all proceeds being donated to charity is a very personal account of Selzer's time as a mechanic with Team Lotus culminating in the 1963 championship for the team.
The book also covers Selzer's early life in South Africa and his move to Europe in search of a job in motor racing. There is a mass of interesting information about the development of the Lotus F1 cars and the trials and tribulations of race preparation and repairs always against the clock and often involving non-stop three day sessions at the factory to meet a race deadline.
As well as a lot of technical information about the cars and brief accounts of all the races there is also an insight into the life of a mechanic on the road travelling Europe from race to race in the days when they were Jack of all trades and expected to build and maintain the cars, drive the transporter, deal with customs and shipping companies, arrange hotel accommodation and garaging of the race cars in the town near the track.
This self penned book is an easy read despite the obvious lack of proof reading and some editing errors but for me this just adds to its charm as it comes direct from Selzer without the filter of a professional journalist or writer and it is essential reading for all Team Lotus enthusiasts. I would give it a 10/10.
I bought my copy through the Classic Team Lotus website and it was also available on Amazon but it is very close to having sold out. For those in the UK, the book is available at Marie Curie Cancer Care charity shops.