Emerson Fittipaldi: Heart of a Racer Hardcover – Feb 9 2003
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Emerson Fittipaldi was crowned the youngest-ever World Champion in 1972 and created the first Brazilian Grand Prix car. This book tells the whole enthralling story of Emerson's career in motorsport.
About the Author
Karl Ludvigsen is the author of bigoraphies of Alberto Ascari, Juan Manuel Fangio, Dan Gurney, Bruce McLaren, Stirling Moss and Jackie Stewart in this popular series, also of Classic Racing Engines and Classic Racing Cars. He owns the Ludvigsen LIbrary, from which many of the 250-odd magnificent photographs for this book are drawn.
Top Customer Reviews
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While being very well presented on glossy paper with a lot of black & white images, Heart of a Racer lacks substance. As the previous reviewer, M. L. Rosen, has noted, Ludvigsen regards Emerson as a personal friend. However, there don't appear to be any interviews with Emerson specifically for the book - published in 2002. All the quotations that Ludvigsen attribute to conversations with Fittipaldi appear to date back to interviews for articles published in the early to late 70's.
The coverage of Fittipaldi's racing career is broken down into sections - his Lotus years, the McLaren years, and the Fittipaldi years in formula one is largely glossed over in a few pages per section - there are more pages dedicated to photography in section than text. Some of the photos aren't fantastic in quality either. Apart from the opening chapter, which details the attempts at the Indy 500 over the years, there is only one other chapter which covers Emerson's Indycar career, which spanned 12 or so seasons. I was disappointed that there was not more material about Emmo's relationships with his teammates and competitors. The rivalry with Ronnie Peterson as a Lotus teammate is only slightly touched on here. And the story of Fittipaldi, the Formula One team, has really yet to be told - the chapter that relates to this period of Emerson's life is quite sketchy.
By and large, I was disappointed with Heart of a Racer - it really is not much more than a coffee table book - mostly pictures and little substance. Which is a real shame, as there are surely many interesting tales that Ludvigsen can relate about Emmo's time in motorsport. Look elsewhere for the definite story of Emerson's motorsport career - a good place to start might be Gordon Kirby's book, "Emerson Fittipaldi" written in 1990, which is often referred to by Ludvigsen in his own text.