Monday, July 21, 2014

BOOK REVIEW RUSSELL MOCKRIDGE MY WORLD ON WHEELS

Here is my first book review, and since it
is the first, I have decided to review one of my 
favorites, Russell Mockridges' classic autobiography
'My World on Wheels' posthumously completed by 
John Burrowes and printed in 1960.

Mockridge was an Australian track rider and road man who won
Two Golds and a Silver in the match sprint and Kilometer TT
 at the 1950 Empire games held in Auckland NZ.
 Two golds in the match sprint and tandem sprint at the 1954
Helsinki Olympic games.

He went on to become a professional road/track rider
competing in Australia and Europe.
His career was cut short when he collided with a
bus while training in Melbourne in on September 13 1958.

What I really enjoyed about reading Mockridges' bio, is his,
what seems to be, complete honesty, in one chapter
"Cross Roads" talking about his "emotional problems" which
he thought he could cure by leaving cycling and 
becoming a Anglican minister, which he did for 14 months,
before coming back to cycling for the rest of his life.

Maybe it is because he had trained as a journalist before 
becoming a cyclist, that this book
  is so well written, but what ever the reason it  is extremely readable, 
but of course ultimately quite sad because of his accident.
It is also a book that doesn't
shy away from any of the taboo subjects that
other sports books from this period (in English anyway) seem to,
 the very personal emotional torments mentioned earlier, 
and the question of drugs, which he has a whole chapter on.
There are many excellent descriptions of his racing in
 Europe and Australia on both road and track, including
his two TDF rides.

If you can find I copy, get it, it really is
one of the classics in cycle literature.

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