Laced with fascinating anecdotes, Raymond Mays' Magnificent Obsession reveals a pivotal figure in motor sport history, and describes the author's enthusiasm for BRM, detailing his visit to Raymond Mays, in Eastgate House, Bourne, in 1963.
Focussing on Mays' early years and successes in motor racing in the 1920s, this book follows his progress to becoming a national celebrity. His famous White Riley's successes at Shelsley Walsh and Brooklands are covered, leading on to the building of the ERAs, which - led by Mays himself - represented the UK in voiturette races on the Continent. ERA's story unfolds with references to all the races in which the team took part.
After WWII, Mays' achievement in building an all-British Grand Prix car, with the financial support of the British Motor Industry, is detailed, going on to describe how, after many changes, a BRM driven by Graham Hill won the 1962 World Championship.
With the help of Mays' letters to the author, this book covers the whole history of BRM, until its demise in 1976.
A lifelong motor racing enthusiast, Bryan Apps created a BRM scrapbook at the age of thirteen, with Raymond Mays writing its foreword In 1952. Mays continued corresponding with Bryan for many years, keeping him informed of the latest developments. Through his paintings, Bryan also formed lasting friendships with Manfred von Brauchitsch, Ken Tyrrell and many others. He has already had four books published, covering a number of motor racing subjects. As an Anglican priest, Bryan Apps acquired international recognition with a 97hp Mobile Church, and established entries in the Guinness Book of Records with a model car and train for Charities.
"an intimate portrait of BRM and its founder told with a unique persistence not from a brusque notebook-wielding journalist, but rather a friendly enthusiast" - Classic Cars
"some fascinating content herein, not least copies of many letters exchanged between author Apps and key personnel in the dual stories of ERA and BRM ... These paint vivid portraits of refined manners in a different world ... the creator's passion is as obvious as it is absolute." - Motor Sport
"some fascinating nuggets are buried here" - Octane (UK)
"Moderately paced and without too much jargon, this fascinating read is enhanced by App's unique colour paintings of the drama, which illustrate May's story as it unfolds." - Auto Express
"I read lots of books but I think I seldom enjoyed one as much as I did this and I recommend it to you all ... as well as impressing visitors when left for them to see it will give you hours of entertainment." - Motor Cycling Club (MCC)
"The author has been a fanatical follower of BRM since its very inception and this enthusiasm comes across in his writing, but what really sets it aside from other books is the fact that most of the copious illustrations are expertly painted by the author rather than photographs." - MG Enthusiast
"There are more complete histories of both ERA and BRM out there, but few offer such a tantalising glimpse into the personality and times of the main man behind those famous racing cars." - Classic driver (monthly)
"unique in its approach to its subject and as such is certainly worthy of inclusion in any collection of the marque's history." - Speedscene
"this charming, personal account provides plenty of fascinating reading." - Classic Car Weekly
"Really something for the F1 classic fanatic!" - Klassiek & Techniek