Speed Duel: The Inside Story of the Land Speed Record in the Sixties

Samuel Hawley, Author
Samuel Hawley, Firefly, $24.95 (360p) ISBN 978-155407-633-8
Open Ebook - 360 pages - 978-1-77088-007-8
Open Ebook - 360 pages - 978-1-77088-062-7
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Even readers who don't know a spark plug from a gear shift will be transfixed by Hawley's white-knuckled account of the ever-escalating competition to hold the Land Speed Record in the ‘60s and early ‘70s. Drawing from countless articles, profiles, documentaries, and interviews with the men and women who were there, Hawley traces the sport's evolution from its first four-wheeled record of 39mph in 1898, to today's jet-propelled 700mph-plus, recounting the creation, testing, and repair of legendary cars like the humble Green Monster and the charismatic Spirit of America. Deft reporting and an eye for detail put readers in the cockpit when drivers like Art Arfons (Green Monster) hit 600mph and on the sidelines when Glenn Leasher's crew helplessly watches him crash at 400mph. Readers will gain a greater appreciation for the meticulous planning and resourcefulness that went into these racers... and what it feels like to blow a tire at 500mph. Gearheads will likely devour this book, but anyone who's ever sat behind a wheel and wondered what it would feel like to floor it will find this cinematic account difficult to put down. Photos. (Sept. 16)
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