John Chisnall, who of course is very much an Eastern Centre ‘personality’ contacted me recently to tell me all about the book he had written with his sparring partner Tony Davis, and would I be prepared to give it a mention in the gazette and/or the Centre website.
To be honest it’s not often I actually sit down to read a book, and it’s even rarer that I would open one that has sidecars on the cover. However, in my usual manner I picked it up to have a flick through, prior to reading it through properly. What a mistake…. I couldn’t put it down, and more than that it wasn’t all about the chairs either. It is stuffed full of fascinating facts about the development of some very intriguing two wheel projects, that vary from the BSA Bantam (I learnt to ride on one of them – and still have it!), through to a monocoque chassis that took Barry Ditchburn to several successes across Europe! But more than that, it transports the reader back to a time when you could just turn up at an event, leathers and helmet in hand and offer your services as a passenger whether you had experience or not, and that seems to include the Isle of Man TT Races – whatever would the Health & Safety officers make of that in the 21st century; not sure there is a column for this level of information on any of the Risk Assessments I have seen!
There are plenty of racing anecdotes, from grass roots to Grands Prix; both on tarmac and off road, and there is an absorbing insight into many of the characters from our neck of the woods who graced our sport on both the National and International stage.
Whether you’re 16 or 60 there is plenty in the 156 pages to keep you amused and amazed; so with Christmas just around the corner this might be a terrific gift for the person in your life who enjoys all thing two and three wheel!