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The Mechanic's Tale

Life in the Pit-Lanes of Formula One
Narrated by: Steve Matchett
Length: 9 hrs and 14 mins
4.5 out of 5 stars (68 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

Formula One Grand Prix mechanic Steve Matchett takes the listener on a compelling journey through his life in the pit-lane, from his beginnings as a young apprentice through his time at Ferrari and BMW to his later success with Benetton.

He gives eye-witness views of the great drivers, including Michael Schumacher, Nigel Mansell, Alain Prost, and Ayrton Senna. He also talks of key Benetton personalities and explains how the team was transformed into a strong, competitive organization, winning three World Championships.

©1999 Steve Matchett (P)2018 Tantor

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    3 out of 5 stars
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  • MarkK
  • NEW YORK, NY, United States
  • 05-14-19

Life outside the Pit-Lanes

It felt like a half third to a half of the book is actually about his adventures outside of F1. There is a long deviation about how to get a book publishing deal; his experience n a hot air balloon; for five minutes he talks about entering digits into a old fashioned calculator; not to mention various other side-stories about English country towns.

Actually the book and the narration are quite entertaining, although at some points the deviations got so long it began to get frustrating (to the point where it becomes clear the 'deviations' are not in fact deviations but the point of the book itself).

Overall the book is not the inside of the pit-lanes. So just be forewarned.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • TSwab
  • Sioux Falls, SD
  • 12-07-18

Amazing to understand the inner workings.

I found it extremely informative and interesting to find out the inner workings of an F1 team. Steve Matchett does an amazing job of telling a story and also narrating this book. I would highly recommend this to anyone who is interested in formula 1.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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Great Listen

I love that Steve Matchett narrated this book. The narration takes you right away into the life & work of an F1 race mechanic. If you're a F1 fan or are just curious about what's going behind the "poshness" of F1, this is all you can ask for and more.

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 11-13-18

The book with the best insight into F1 Racing

So much detail used to describe every step of the story, would recommend to anyone who is interested the slightest in racing and wants to get a taste of it.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • K. A. Thomas
  • 08-08-19

Plodding and dull

Slow, plodding narration delivering mindnumbingly dull anecdotes peppered with nonsense quotes and inane ramblings. An extremely disappointing listen that could have been condensed to about an hour of mildly interesting insights.

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  • Mr M W Fluke
  • 06-30-19

Moaning

Sorry but I personally found the constant complaining about lack of sleep, being tired, how his mate had to get him out of bed and how depressing it is over a race weekend to much..... really struggling to finish the book....

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  • Martin Castilla
  • 01-02-19

Interesting and fascinating. But missing bits...

Enjoyed listening to this book by the author, some interesting inside stories etc. I feel there's more there than he told: He mentions Benetton were questioned re their engine mapping software (remember every other team suspected of them using anti-wheel spin launch mapping on their cars), but skims the surface of that topic, and also 1-2 others which the team was embroiled in. Every other driver/team bio I've read strongly points the fingers at Benetton for deliberately infringing during those years, but Matchett doesn't delve deeper than to mention the fines. Still, the book is enjoyable and a worthwhile addition to a motor racing fan's library of knowledge.