The Royal Automobile Club Motoring Book of the Year Awards will take place on Wednesday 28th October 2020 in either a live or online format at the Club’s Pall Mall Clubhouse. Now in their seventh consecutive year, the awards are recognised as the most prestigious to be bestowed in the automotive publishing industry.
There was an overwhelming response this year, with 32 entries representing 24 different publishing houses – from international and independents to self-published authors. The shortlist of contenders includes biographies, marque histories, motor sport titles and general motoring reference books.
Three awards will be presented: Motoring Book of the Year, for an exceptional book with wide appeal and costing no more than £75.00; Specialist Book of the Year, which, in the opinion of the judges, is a feat of impeccable research and flawless writing regardless of its retail cost; and finally a new award introduced this year – the Lifetime Achievement Award, which will recognise those who have made a significant contribution to the international motoring book industry.
The award committee consists of six expert judges who are totally independent of the Royal Automobile Club, representing the UK’s most informed motoring literary critics, including Gordon Cruickshank of Motor Sport, Mark Dixon of Octane, Mick Walsh of Classic & Sports Car, and avid book collector and editor of the BRDC Bulletin Ian Titchmarsh. Representing the retail sector are Ben Horton of specialist bookseller Horton’s Books, and Christian Whitehead of the London bookstore Foyles. The judging panel was chaired by respected motor sport writer, commentator and historian Simon Taylor.
With its own library at Pall Mall housing in the region of 6,000 motoring books, a rich pedigree in celebrating motoring accomplishments and a heritage bound to the history of the motor car, the Club is well suited to recognising excellence in motoring literature.
“The Royal Automobile Club Motoring Book of the Year Awards have become synonymous with celebrating the best automotive books, authors and publishers,” said Jeremy Vaughan, Head of Motoring. “The quality of entries this year has been quite remarkable, which is a reassuring sign that the industry is in good shape and the appetite for motoring books continue to be healthy. The rigour around the judging process was very impressive and given the quality of entries it was the toughest judging year yet. We now focus on the recipient of the Lifetime Achievement Award, which is another tough task because there are some outstanding candidates that have devoted their life to motoring publishing.”
The six titles shortlisted for Motoring Book of the Year are:
- Richie Ginther Motor Racing’s Free Thinker by Richard Jenkins (Performance Publishing)
- Louis Coatalen Engineering Impresario of Humber, Sunbeam, Talbot and Darracq by Oliver Heal (Unicorn Publishing Group LLP)
- A Race with Love and Death: The Story of Richard Seaman by Richard Williams (Simon & Schuster UK Ltd)
- The Complete Catalogue of the Land Rover by James Taylor (Herridge & Sons Ltd)
- Niki Lauda His Competition History by Jon Saltinstall (Evro Publishing)
- Design Between the Lines by Patrick Le Quément (Merrell Publishers)
The six titles shortlisted for Specialist Motoring Book of the Year are:
- Claude Deane Western Australia’s Motor Dealer Extraordinaire by Graeme Cocks (Motoring Past Vintage Publishing)
- Shadow The Magnificent Machines of a Man of Mystery by Pete Lyons (Evro Publishing)
- Ultimate Works Porsche 956 – The Definitive History by Serge Vanbockryck (Porter Press Intl Ltd)
- Sharknose V6 – Ferrari 156, Ferrari 246SP & Ferrari 196SP by Jörg-Thomas Födisch & Rainer Rossbach (McKlein Publishing)
- Shelby Cobra Daytona Coupe – The autobiography of CSX2300 by Rinsey Mills (Porter Press Intl Ltd)
- Maserati in the World Sports Car and Manufacturers Championships from 1953 to 1966 by Michel Bollee and Jean-Francois Blachette (Syllabe Editions)