“Ferrari: The Grand Prix Cars (new ed.)” (Alan Henry, 1989)

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Books on Ferrari are ten a penny. But most of the titles about the famous Italian marque are glossy ‘coffee table’ pieces with plenty of pretty pictures but little in the way of style.

So I was very happy to come across this very substantial book by Alan Henry. What it lacks it gloss it more than makes up for in detail – packing four decades of Ferrari history into its 350 pages.

It may be the best part of two decades old but this ‘new edition’ is an indispensable resource for anyone looking for information on Ferrari that raced from the pre-championship ’40s up to the end of the turbo era in 1988.

Or, to put it another way, the racing team’s life under the stewardship of found Enzo Ferrari.

Henry pays close attention to which designers that fell in and out of favour and his thorough notes on their work are accompanied by a large number of judiciously selected photographs.

One picture that particularly interested me was of Mauro Forghieri’s disastrous and hideous 312B3 with its distinctive ‘snowplough’ front wing, which I had never seen before.

I always enjoy Henry’s writing and I’d grown used to thinking of him as a McLaren expert (his columns for Autocar are weekly must-reads). But he knows their number one rivals inside out as well.

This isn’t just a dry history of the technical evolution of the cars – the narrative covers the championship successes (and failures), changes within the Ferrari team and the inevitable, pervasive politics of the years under Enzo.

Ignoring the fact that two more decades of Ferrari history have been written since its publications, it’s hard to fault at all. You don’t have to be a Ferrari fan to appreciate this book.

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Alan Henry

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Tags: f1 / formula one / formula 1 / grand prix / motor sport

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Keith Collantine
Lifelong motor sport fan Keith set up RaceFans in 2005 - when it was originally called F1 Fanatic. Having previously worked as a motoring...

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One comment on ““Ferrari: The Grand Prix Cars (new ed.)” (Alan Henry, 1989)”

  1. Based on your review I bought this book – and I’m not disappointed… Probably the best book on the history of Ferrari F1’s. Thanks!

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