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Also available on amazon.com for £5.03 (as of September 19, 2018 12:43 pm – Details). Product prices and availability are accurate as of the date/time indicated and are subject to change. Any price and availability information displayed on the Amazon site at the time of purchase will apply to the purchase of this product.

10 September 1961: at the boomerang-shaped racetrack at Monza, in northern Italy, half a dozen teams are preparing for the Italian Grand Prix. It is the biggest race anyone can remember. Phil Hill – the first American to break into the top ranks of European racing – and his Ferrari teammate, Count Wolfgang von Trips – a German nobleman with a movie-star manner – face each another in a race that will decide the winner of the Formula One drivers' championship. By the day's end, one man will clinch that prize. The other will perish face down on the track.

In The Limit, Michael Cannell tells the thrilling story of two parallel lives that come together in tragedy on a hot late-summer afternoon. He charts their careers from childhood and adolescence lived in the shadow of world war; through their gruelling experiences in such deadly road races as the Mille Miglia and the 24 Hours of Le Mans; to their coming of age in the hothouse atmosphere of Enzo Ferrari's Formula One team of the late 1950s. The quiet and self-contained Hill was a pathological worrier who vomited before a race and enjoyed Bartok and Shostakovich – rather than Campari and debauchery – thereafter; the dashing von Trips lived life as fast as he drove his 'sharknose' Ferrari, and yearned to inspire a nation fractured and traumatized by war. Both men strove to attain the perfect balance of speed and control that drivers called 'the limit': to drive under that limit was to run the risk of failure; to go beyond it was to dice with death.

The Limit is a vivid and atmospheric recreation of a lost world of seductive glamour and ever-present danger. Michael Cannell tells a moving and unforgettable tale of high speed and burning rivalry – and of young lives lived in the shadow of oblivion.

Product Details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 1878 KB
  • Print Length: 337 pages
  • Publisher: Atlantic Books; Main edition (1 Nov. 2011)
  • Sold by:  Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Language: English
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray: Not Enabled
  • Word Wise: Enabled
  • Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled

Customer Reviews

Could Not Put This Book Down

 on 9 March 2014
By Retro Brit
If you are a formula one fan and want to learn about the dangers of the 1950s F1 races, then this is a must. It follows the exploits of Phil Hill, the American F1 racer and Wolfgang Von Tripps of Germany. These two racers come up through the ranks alongside many other great racers from Spain, Italy, Britain etc.

A good read about dark times in Formula 1 racing.

 on 20 June 2016
By Kindle Customer Stuart Waters
A very good read for anyone interested in the history of Formula one1 racing! It shows how the safety aspect had to be improved on these death trap vehicles. I was a little boy in this era, and this book brought everything flooding back. The deaths of so many racing drivers, through poor safety measures! Leading finally to some drivers refusing to drive the cars.

Some less well-known stories from the era

 on 26 December 2012
By Jersey Customer
I bought this as a present for my F1-mad 18 year old daughter. She is a walking/talking encyclopedia of F1, she has all the stats and numbers and names just in her head, but is constantly adding to her knowledge by reading up on the more distant (to her) era of the earlier days of the sport. She says that the three drivers who are mainly referenced in this book (can’t remember them all, but from memory Phil Hill and Von Tripps are two of them) offer a fascinating insight into F1 in those days, and as a result my daughter has become a real champion of their memories. A good book for the keen enthusiast.

life and death in motor racing, pre health and safety

 on 13 March 2013
By Kindle Customer
Very interesting book about an era in motor racing that is before my time. I had vaguely heard of some of the brave young drivers, so many of whom, lost their lives to their sport in a time when racing prestige for the car companies was put before safety for the drivers, (and spectators). A fast paced read, in keeping with the subject which offers an insight and glimpse into a lost time and also into the foundations of modern Formula 1. If you like motor racing, you’ll love this book, even if you are not particularly into motor racing, it is still a very good read.

Excellent read – Very evocative

 on 8 March 2013
By Mark
I thought I knew a fair bit about motor racing in the 50s and early 60s, but this book really brought the period to life.

Blood and gore!!!

 on 11 December 2013
By nosbig
When I started to read this book,I thought it may be one of the `arty farty` F1 books that come out now and again?

I’m not a sports or racing fan but…

 on 30 December 2012
By Charlie&Molly
I loved this book, I am a nostalgia fan and that combined with the reviews made me interested enough to buy this book. It was all I hoped for, an gripping read about a subject I knew very little about and it follows the old saying that truth is stranger than fiction. I highly recommend this book to anyone who is a fan of good research and writing. You really don’t have to be a sports fan to enjoy it.

What a Great Read

 on 1 February 2013
By Oldsparky
I really enjoyed the book, full of real feeling for the people who were racing for fun to start with and it became a living with death always over the shoulder, only downside was the end of the book was filled with where all the quotes came from so many.
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