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From playing with his childhood Dinky toys to winning the RAC Rally of Great Britain, Tony Mason’s life has been one of constant variety.

Mason, who will be familiar to Australians as a former host and anchor man of the popular “Top Gear” TV series, has done it all (well, most of it) during a career of four decades.

His just-released book gives the reader an insight into all the different facets of his chequered career. Mason started rallying in the early ‘60s as an in-demand navigator in British and International events.

He went on to co-drive for the Ford works team, sitting alongside the great Roger Clark to record an outright win in the 1972 RAC Rally, a subject which Mason describes in great detail.

We are given a look at his early years, his dominance of night navigational events, his rides with a variety of drivers and the dedication to the sport of rallying.

When the jovial and much-watched personality decided that he was too old to endure all-night events (and the added risk of crashing or ending upside down), he turned his hand to television, being widely recognised as ‘Mr Rallying’.

He developed a huge following by interviewing and appearing on rally forums for more than 15 years. His work, if it can be called that, has taken him to more than 100 countries where he has interviewed the world’s best drivers and navigators, engaged in some widely varied programs for TV, and been recognised as a jovial and highly competent front man and after dinner speaker.
It’s an interesting and easy, down-to-earth read and covers a wide subject range. For rally fans it provides an insight into a life that all of us would probably like to copy – rallying at every available opportunity.

There’s plenty of lessons for budding navigators and some examples of what to do and what not to do when you’re in the left hand seat. Oh, and did we mention that he’s now a celebrity speaker and entertainer on P&O cruise ships?

Within the book’s 200+ pages there’s plenty to read, together with a good number of descriptive photos to illustrate the story.

Our only criticism of the book might be with the title. ‘Mason’s Motoring Mayhem’ might be better titled as ‘Mason’s Motoring Moments’. Other than that, we loved it.

‘Mason’s Motoring Mayhem’ by Tony Mason, will be available in Australia in the coming weeks.
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