There are two sorts of thorough review of significant race cars.
There are the massive, large format, several hundred page long and often several hundred pounds in cost ‘coffee table’ extravaganzas. These are almost universally fabulous, wonderful things to own, and far too nice to refer to every day!
Then there’re the smaller format, perhaps less lushly illustrated, and usually smaller format books that are destined to be well thumbed, regularly referred to and, to students of motorsport history like myself, certainly no less prized that their glossier, more expensive and heavier brethren.
Veloce Books latest addition to their WSC Giants series is one of the latter breed, joining previous titles covering Gulf Mirage, Ferrari 312, Matra’s MS 600 series and the Audi R8, and covers the racing history of the iconic Ferrari 333SP.
It’s a compact little title, soft backed and 130 pages but it covers a huge amount of ground from the very beginnings of Ferrari’s first sports prototype for over 20 years, through its successful career on both sides of the Atlantic Ocean for almost a decade.
With 40 chassis built by Ferrari (the first four) Dallara and Michelotto there’s plenty of ground to cover.
Every contemporary race for all the raced chassis are covered in brief with results, plenty of contemporary photographs, all in colour and many previously unpublished (albeit with some pictures chosen for historic completeness rather than their technical or artistic merits). The latter day Judd re-engined cars are dealt with too.
If you are looking for full race reports and glossy A4 size pictures then look elsewhere but this book covers all of the important details on the racing record, teams, and drivers that gave the 333 SP the huge profile it richly deserved as the World Sports Car scene emerged from the wreckage of Group C.
DSC’s review copy arrived on the very same day as much more expensive book, on a subject equally of interest. Perhaps tellingly, that book was flicked through once and has been on the bookshelf ever since. The Ferrari tome though has been read from cover to cover referred back to on more than one occasion since. The information contained within it, easily accessible and very readable.
If you’re looking for a ‘bells and whistles’ telling of the cars story with in-depth interviews and tales of derring-do then look elsewhere.
But if you’re looking for something more accessible, a trot through a transitional decade, an aide memoire or a brief work of reference at a very accessible price then this book is for you.
£16.95 ($27.95 USD)