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October 23, 2019
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Amédée Gordini – a true racing legend

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Alpine Renault – The fabulous berlinettes
Alpine & Renault – The Development of the Revolutionary Turbo F1 Car
Click here to LISTEN to Roy Smith talking about the book!
Shortlisted for Publication of the year at Historic Motoring Awards 2013

Amédée Gordini – a true racing legend

By Roy Smith
About the Author

Hardback • 20.7x25cm • 288 pages

ISBN: 978-1-845843-17-5

£ 55.00 Postage + P&P (eBook prices vary, and delivery is free)

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• The first time that the complete story of Gordini, Alpine and Renault has been brought together in one work
• The first time the full story of Amedee Gordini has been told in English
• The first complete history in English of all the racing cars and their races
• Features unique illustrations of the cars
• Packed with photographs from important period collections
• Translated transcripts from many interviews conducted in the period and later
• Contains interviews with ex-employees about their time working with Gordini
• Unique extracts from the personal diaries of someone who lived with the team in 1948 and 1949
• Lists every engine, race, and engine project
• Contains moments of joy, despair, great humour and stunning images


This is the story of a man, a team, and their life and times, as well as a complete record of all their achievements and failures. It logs the financial and personal cost of racing in the prewar and postwar periods. It tells of how the mighty car company Renault became involved with them in the late 1950s, and how Amedee Gordini became known throughout the world as one of the greatest engine tuners of his time.


This is a story of excitement, laughs, astonishment and anger – a story of the determination of a man with a dream and a passion for motor racing in the big leagues. It is the first time that the history of the always under-financed Gordini racing team has been documented in English, and the first complete story of Gordini himself in any language.
This volume will appeal to new enthusiasts and old hands of Formula 1 and sports prototypes, especially those who have owned a Gordini engined-car. It charts Gordini’s early life and beginnings in motorsport, up to 1969 when Renault took over the Gordini company, keeping his name on all the racing engines until 1986, before finally resurrecting it for a performance version of the Renault Twingo and Clio in 2009.
The book is packed with evocative period images from important collections, supplementary transcripts in English from many contemporary interviews, plus recollections from former employees remembering their time working with Gordini, and an exhaustive set of statistics. All the way it’s a roller coaster of joy, despair, humour, and stunning images. The racing legend of ‘Le Sorcier’ lives on.

Independent Reviews

'a real blockbuster ... retains the same high standards of presentation and meticulous
research, which we have come to expect of this enthusiast ... Roy's style is colloquial and, frankly, this is well suited to the subject matter in hand, because much of the interest centres on the exchanges with people, who knew Gordini, one way or another and, in any case, the only real alternative is to retail sequentially this history on a tum-tee-tum-tee-tum basis, which would be just plain boring ... a unique and beautifully presented book, which is crammed full of period photographs and tables of information.'

'a story that ought to appeal to anyone with an interest in the David and Goliath aspect so common to the human condition and not just to aficionados of GP racing or quirky French road cars. Add to that the fact that this is the first time the Gordini story has been recorded in English and the only time it has been brought up to date and you have a book you can’t very well do without ... The writing in this ... book is supremely fluid, fleshed out, and utterly engaging. Also, and important in its own way, this book for once evidences complete command of the conventions of proper punctuation that UK writers have for years made a sport of ignoring! ... there’s simply nothing not to like in this book!'
The Flying Lady

'Deliciously told, in 288 hardcover pages fabulously illustrated with more than 400 historic photos and technical drawings, this is the definitive Gordini story ... This is a terrific work that will thrill any automotive Francophile.'
Hemmings Sports & Exotic Car

'THIS hardback charts Amedeo Gordini's early life, from when he saw his first race aged nine to when he moved to Paris and became Amedee. It also covers everything from the start of his motorsport career in 1946 to when Renault took over his Gordini company in 1969. Amazing detail includes pictures and a summary of every race.'
Auto Express *****

Motor Books' Book of the Month May 2013 – View the video review at

'The production quality is to Veloce's usual high standard and it remains a fascinating read for all those with a sense of motor racing history.'
Speedscene, May 2013

'The wealth of information here is staggering, and the race-by-race summary is particularly welcome.'
Octane, June 2013

'At last, an English account of this fascinating French turner and constructor … As well as design development, the extensive race history is recorded, plus fascinating human stories [and] a superb selection of historic photos, circuit maps and cutaway drawings … Book of the month.'
Classic & Sports Car, May 2013.

'The wealth of information here is staggering, and the race-by-race summary is particularly welcome.'
Octane, May 2013.

'Utterly absorbing.'
Classic Cars, May 2013.

'Gordini's endless enthusiasm and prolific output make for an involving tale.'
Motor Sport, May 2013.

'Here at Last. The term ‘long-awaited’ is surely an understatement when applied to Roy Smith’s latest book. Not that it’s Roy’s fault, mind you, for without his effort there would probably be no book about Gordini at all, save Christian Huet’s remarkable and still handy Gordini Un Sorcier Une Equipe, published a generation ago in 1984. Fortunately the long wait was worth it; if you are the least bit interested in Grand Prix racing, Italian cars, French cars or just beautiful cars, Smith’s fantastic book should be part of your library.
'Roy’s book is superb, and try as we might, we have very few negatives to report … It is simply one of those books that will become part of the Absolutely Essential Library.
'Smith told us that he really enjoys working with the staff at Veloce Publishing (no relation to VeloceToday). He told us, “I like the feel of it, it’s a proper book, a proper job and I like what they did with the images and the cover.” The book is a book … no coffee table work, little in the way of flashy layout, but a lot of text, explanations, with images that aid in the understanding of the topic.'


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