Originally posted by terry mcgrath
I would have to say having seen the mention of this book "An Artist at the Game" and paying the $6.47US for the downloadable version it is not worth it no real guts to it, lots of blank pages, large print, big borders etc virtually no photos. Anyway I will be interested to hear others comments
I have just down-loaded the book, without difficulty, at a cost of £3.75. I can see why someone expecting a book on motor racing might be disappointed: it's only just over 7,000 words long including the appendices, acknowledgements and table of contents - but to expect a whole motor racing book for the same price as a small glass of the house red in an inexpensive restaurant might elsewhere be thought to be overly optimisitc. The booklet is exactly what it says: a memorial to one, very young and clearly very talented, driver who was killed before the end of his first international season, while still essentially an unknown amateur. By definition it is not going to be very big.
Only the cognoscenti had heard of Bill Smith when he was killed at Dundrod in 1955, in the last full-on motor race to be held on public roads in the UK (pace the Birmingham Grand Prix and other such exhibitions) and on what was in effect his first works drive. Without this little memoire, he would to the present-day historian now still be only 'the talented and up-and-coming youngster' that the contemporary reports - and thus all later accounts - of the race described. With the booklet, naive (in the nicest sense of the word) as it might be said in places to be, his brief presence in the sport, along with a glimpse at what the future might have held for both him and the sport, is better secured. Inter alia, the book also gives probably the most accurate and detailed account now available of what actually happened in the crash that ended not only the lives of Bill Smith and Jim Mayers but also ended road racing for motor cars in the UK.
As to the blank pages, et al: I suspect the .pdf downloadable version has fallen victim to the formating and page breaks needed to create a sensible looking printed version.
I recommend it to anyone interested in British sports car racing of the Fifties in general, and the Dundrod TT in particular.
Like I say: we are talking less than the price of a decent glass of wine here.