F1 Winter Break
Get your copy of the JA on F1 review of the 2009 season
Get your copy of the JA on F1 review of the 2009 season
Posted By: James Allen  |  28 Oct 2009   |  10:12 pm GMT  |  99 comments

I’m delighted to announce that on November 27th we will be publishing a book looking back on the 2009 season. It is a review of the goings-on both on and off the circuit in what has certainly been the most action packed season I’ve ever covered.

The book is the story of the 2009 season told through the eyes of the James Allen on F1 blog, with updates and extra editorial from me.

It has the behind the scenes insights into all the big stories of the year from the F1 breakaway threat and the Renault crash scandal to Ferrari’s swoop for Fernando Alonso. There is plenty of my personal perspective here too; from the colour and drama of the race weekends themselves, to travelling Easyjet to a Grand Prix with Ross Brawn and sitting opposite Max Mosley as he calmly said that “F1 can survive without Ferrari”.

I’ve called it “F1’s revolutionary year” because it was the year when the established order was turned on its head as top teams lost their grip on success and backmarkers came through to beat them. Off track it was the year when the teams united in revolt against the governing body and established a new structure for the F1 of the future.

It’s been a breathtaking year and I think this book sums it up well.

It’s a large format paperback with 250 pages of stories and it features photography by my favourite F1 snapper Darren Heath.

I’m delighted that world champion team owner Ross Brawn has agreed to write the foreword.

I’ve loved blogging this season and building up a large and thriving community of people passionate about F1, who offer intelligent observation in their comments. We will be sending out a free copy to the ten readers who have left the most comments during the course of the season (we already know who those 10 people are, by the way)

It’s a limited print run so, for those of you who have been with me the whole way through the year, I hope you will find this a cool collectable. We will produce one every year and you can build the series.

For those who have only discovered the blog recently, I hope you will want to find out what you missed earlier in the year. It will be a good book to dip into over Christmas.

The book will be priced at £9-99 and should be available in many bookshops and through Amazon from 27 November. We have our own fulfilment here on the site and our distribution partner, CPI, are taking pre-orders. I will personally sign any book ordered through the JA on F1 website.

Just click through the advert on the right side of the homepage to pre-order your copy.

Hope you find it a good read and please be sure to give me your feedback!

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Sorry that something went wrong, repeat again!

Sorry, I missed this announcement while on holiday.

It has been a great year and your blog has added enormously to the understanding and enjoyment of it, more so than the accepted brand leaders in my view.

So thanks a lot – and book ordered!


Congrats on your book James, I’m sure it’ll be a good read! I especially look forward to the photos from Darren, he is a quality photographer – love his look on F1.

Shall be getting this as a Christmas present for myself!


James, give us a weekly or bi-weekely podcast!!!! I’d be happy to pay for something worthwhile. Suffice to say i think you would easily become the No.1 F1 or motosports podcast out there.

It would be great for 2010

PS – book ordered


James this is a great idea. I was thinking the other day that F1 fans really don’t have a book from a well know F1 Journalist to review the year – My Murray Walker books have been read to death.

Can I also commend you on your Biography on Michael Schumacher – The Edge of Greatness. I was never a big Schumacher fan, but reading your book has made me realise his strengths and weaknesses in a balanced way.

You should be on to a winner – Great analysis with awesome pictures.

Just a thought, will you be including some of the best comments from the blog in these books. This could inspire your blog readers to put a lot of though in to their responses if they know they could well make a published book.


Not this time, but maybe next year as a development


I will be ordering a copy James. I have wrote a few bits but I don’t think I will be in the top 10. Will any of my comments or those of others feature in the book? Carl


Have just asked the missus to order one from this site for Christmas. Am regretting not hitting ‘Submit Comment’ on some of the more frivolous comments I made throughout the year.


First of all, big thanks to you James! You have made my followership of F1 much more enjoyable!

If you could tell me if your review is going to hit the stands in India anytime soon?


No you’ll have to order online either here or on Amazon


While I hope 2010 sees you back in the F1 commentary box with the BBC (and keeping the blog going) this blog has been an invaluable source of information and news this season for me, first F1 site I look at each day and certainly the book will be ordered by me


Cheers for that


“We will be sending out a free copy to the ten readers who have left the most comments during the course of the season (we already know who those 10 people are, by the way)”

That’s a very nice touch James, and a great way to say thanks to those folks. Congrats on the unexpected gift, whomever you are, guys! I am sure I’m not alone in coming here as much for the insightful comments as James’ own posts.


I’ll post the names soon.


James, I’ve just ordered a copy of you book.

Your blog this year has been excellent

and enhanced a great season of racing.

Many thanks, and keep up the good work!


Thank you


Thanks James, just ordered one.

To be true to the 2009 season, are you going to produce a handful of copies with a double inside cover, after which the rest will have to be re-printed 🙂




I’m going to order your book in a second so that, above all else, I can give a bit back for what you’ve given us throughout the year!

Please keep up the good work through the winter and 2010.


Cheers, appreciate that sentiment.


Excellent news.

Agree with this comment too:

“My first thought when itv lost the rights was that i wouldn’t get your friday form guides or sunday race verdicts, imagine my joy when your blog appeared with far more content!”


Thanks. I still do the form guide etc for ITV, but I’m delighted that the content on here has gone down well. I’m going to add some new content ideas over the winter and into 2010. I’m loving this and wish I’d started it years ago!


Hi James,

Great Blog! I perhaps arrived a little later than some, but reading your blog is now essential to my F1 consumption, and more reliable than many other F1 sites.

I think the BBC had a tough job to follow, as ITV raised the bar considerably over the years, and for the most part have excelled, but in truth I would have preferred they kept the main commentary team together, but then you probably wouldn’t have kept this blog so active!

This site now has a large following with great user comments, and moderated – which is a major plus for the casual reader!

As for the actual racing…. what a year!

How long before 2010 season starts….


As others have said, this has been an invaluable resource this season. I have come to your blog everyday James, even though i haven’t commented much. It’s simply fantastic. I have a few questions.

1)When we order through the above link do we have to do anything more to get our copy signed by your good self?

2)How has this year compared to your many previous years? Has it been more or less enjoyable working on your blog rather than other outlets? Is it something you had considered doing in previous years? How do you feel it has turned out? I think it’s safe to say you have created a blog that it just as important as Autosport, personally speaking.

Many thanks.

Roll on silly season and 2010



1. No I will go to the warehouse and sign them all in late November before the orders get sent out.

2. More eventful, lots of politics (boo) but some really high stakes stuff regarding the future of the sport so very interesting. I liked the inversion of the old order on track, even if the double diffuser thing was a bit messy at the start of the year. If DDs had been banned Red Bull would have been champions this year


James your blog is absolutely fantastic and is easily the best source of F1 info. Unlike many other sites you don’t just regurgitate what everyone else is saying.

Have ordered your book as a thank you for running this great site.


Hi James,

I’ve been following your blog throughout the year and although I never left any comment before (I’m just not such a big commenter) I really love it. I’m living in Costa Rica (haven’t you noticed me in your statistics?) and Formula1 coverage here is nihil. Live broadcasting is horrible with commentators from the studio that manage to talk through all the radio broadcasts. I’m so thankfull for internet and your blog so I can keep following Formula1 like how I used to do it when I was living in Europe.

I will definately order your book! Just to be sure it arrives I’ll have it delivered to friends in The Netherlands. The mailservice here is not so reliable :/.


Hi James,

Would love to order a book, but theres no provision for paying via paypal 🙁 Can anything be done?




We will look into that.


I’ll be ordering as soon as I get from iPhone to a proper computer. I was going to order the official review but this will have far more insight and unbiased opinion.

I’m fairly new to the blog so even the original blog content will be a fresh read for me, let alone extra insight and great photography.

Despite the Brawn dominance I think it’s been a fascinating season on and off the track and this book will be a great way to relive that, now and in years to come.

Well done James, hope it’s as succesful as it rightly deserves to be.


well, thanks to You, we can almost feel the gasoline and V8 noise 🙂

Great Idea !

Cockney James Hunt

That’s brilliant news. Congratulations. You have been my first stop for information and analysis for the entire year and it’s been fantastic to see someone with a traditional media background embrace the digital space with as much belief and passion as you have done. Now, if we can only get rid of Legard…


Hi James,

Congrats on the book, smashing cover by the way, really tells the story of the season, a Brawn effortlessly slipping through turbulent waves to get an almost unbelievable result. Though I’m sure it wasn’t effortless!

I have to disagree with some of the comments about this season being awful, what were they watching!! It’s been cracking season. Perhaps I’m a bit weird but I enjoyed everything (even the controversy) its been an amazing story that had a happy ending in the end .

There’s been some real heros. There’s the obvious Brawn/Button/Barrichelo story, but what about Raikonnen’s drives, even though he was being pushed out of Ferrari. Force India and Fisi at Spa. Hamilton fighting a poor car and restoring his image and coming out a different man. There’s also been victims (Massa, Raikonnen again, BMW team, Toyota drivers and Vatenen) and villains (Denis, Mosely and Flavio are almost panto quality).

I know I’m probably a bit weird in enjoying the politics but it’s been full of intrigue and fills the hours between races. And when the race starts it’s all about the race (everything else is just waiting I remember some bloke said once). And there’s been some crackers this season.

Besides, if you’re not interested in the politics then don’t read about it. Just watch the flippin race if it winds you up.

In fact my only question to you James, how did you fit it into just one volume!


PS ‘Will you have a pdf version that can be downloaded for those not handy to the shops?’, cheeky bugger! 😉


Hi James,

Have just ordered the book, it will be really nice to have a signed copy. As mentioned in a previous post I am extremely impressed by your website and also the informed opinion of the people who post on it, your website is the first place I visit to get my daily petrol fix. Other than wanting to thank you for such an excellent website I wanted to find out if there is any way of also buying a signed copy of your Schumacher book.

Best regards



Hey James – fantatsic idea – just bought mine – only problem is I have to way a whole month for it to arrive! ha ha cheers Don

Paige Michael-Shetley

Cheers, James. You’ve done a great job with the blog, and I’m sure the book will be a winner.

I agree that F1 has gone through a revolution this year. On the competition side, I think it’s something of a lasting revolution. Honda/Brawn and Red Bull had been laying all the necessary pieces of the foundation of a top team for years, and all they needed was exactly what they got: some heavily revised technical regulations to give their brilliant designers and engineers a clean slate with the top teams. I think those two are here to stay and that F1 now has four-teams at the top instead of just two.

It feels odd to say this, but it appears as though there’s a pretty good amount of parity in F1, something we probably never thought we’d see. Obviously, there isn’t parity in the sense that the teams spend the same amount of money or that F1 is a spec series. The teams were all so close in performance this year, but I can’t think of another season in which the competitive order was so sensitive to the levels by which each circuit suited the characteristics of individual cars. Force India and Williams are probably the best examples. The VJM-002 went like a bat out of hell on low drag circuits but was a midfielder to backmarker the whole season on maximum downforce circuits. Williams had a car capable of finishing on the podium on the maximum downforce circuits, yet it couldn’t get out of its own way on the low drag circuits. We could see this trend continue in an era of cost-cutting, an era in which McLaren and Ferrari can’t just spend $400 million to essentially develop different cars for each circuit type that remain competitive on the balance.

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