I joined Autosport magazine in 1984, after a year on the road as a freelance. It was not long before I began to write a regular column called Globetrotter, which came about because of all the travelling I was doing. This led to a commission from Hamlyn Publishing to write "The World Atlas of Motor Racing". The book did well, selling 40,000 copies and, unknown to me, influenced a whole generation of young F1 fans, with its descriptions of the world's racing circuits - and great illustrations from the artist Jim Bamber.
After that, I stayed away from book-writing for 18 years, concentrating on journalism, but at the same time, researching an amazing story of successful Grand Prix drivers, who worked together as British secret agents in Occupied France during World War II. Much of the information was still classified when I started out, but gradually I pieced together an astonishing story. This became The Grand Prix Saboteurs. Here are some of the book reviews:
"A cracking story. A tale of derring-do and chivalry on the racetracks of yore, of romance against the glamorous backdrops of 1920s Paris and Monaco, and of heroism and tragedy behind the lines in World War Two. The Grand Prix Saboteurs is history, but it reads like a series of screenplays crammed with compelling characters." - The Daily Telegraph
"I could not put the book down, and having now finished it, I wish it had gone on longer.” - The International Herald Tribune
"It may sound like fiction but the dramatic story related in this book is one of the most remarkable in motor racing history." - Autosport
"It's a great book, well written and the two main figures, Grover-Williams and Benoist are just what racing drivers should be. It would make a brilliant film." - James Allen
"Probably the best sports book published so far this year. It is a compelling take that will appeal not just to racing enthusiasts but to sports fans in general." - The Birmingham Post
After the success of The Grand Prix Saboteurs, I decided to embark on a new challenge, outside motor racing. I researched and wrote "The Man who Caught Crippen, the story of Henry Kendall, who went to sea as a cabin boy at 15 and by the age of 32 had become the captain of one of the largest Atlantic liners. He survived shipwrecks, torpedoes, icebergs, attempted murder, scorpion bites, sharks, fevers , flying bombs and even an escaped leopard. The book was later translated as "La Vie Extraordinaire de Henry Kendall".