Wednesday 14 August 2013


Jonathan Yates, author of The Real Way Round gives us a look inside his book in this exclusive new presentation video!

Available now!
The Real Way Round - 1 year, 1 motorcycle, 1 man, 6 continents, 35 countries, 42,000 miles, 9 oil changes, 3 sets of tyres, and loads more ... by Jonathan Yates.

One man’s real-life experience of motorcycling solo around the globe – no back-up teams, no spare bikes, no film crews – just him and his Yamaha Ténéré XT660, travelling 42,000 miles through 6 continents and 35 countries, seeing amazing things; meeting fascinating people; experiencing different cultures, and coping with extremely challenging conditions.
        This book is not only proof that anyone can do it, but also a practical guide to motorcycling round the world: what to do first; what to plan for, and how to cope with the unexpected. Featuring nearly 700 stunning, inspirational images of the places, people and events of our wonderful world (which make you want to experience them for yourself!), the book also contains route maps, points of interest, and practical guidance on freighting a motorcycle.
         An eye-opening, absorbing and pragmatic account – described pictorially and by informal, straightforward commentary – of motorcycling around the world. More info.

Friday 9 August 2013


On 7th July 2013 John Rosamond provided his "Reminiscences of the Meriden Triumph Factory Talk" for the Northants branch of the TOMCC at their headquarters meeting place The George Inn, Main Street, Wilby, Wellingborough.

The 2 hour talk that started at 8.30pm provided a good debate of what happened at the Triumph Meriden factory between the years of 1971 to 1983 and as such is an excellent "companion" to John Rosamond's Veloce book Save the Triumph Bonneville! The Inside Story of the Meriden Workers' Co-op.

Ian Sargent and the committee of the Northants branch did a great job in organising what was accepted by all as a lively, thought provoking evening.

Click here for more info about the book.

Friday 2 August 2013


This month we welcome Mark Paxton, author of 8 Veloce books, into the author profile spotlight ...

According to my well-thumbed dictionary, an obsession is “an idea or thought that continually preoccupies or intrudes on a person's mind,” which pretty much sums up my lifelong relationship with the internal combustion engine and the vehicles it powers. My second birthday was apparently spent playing with a Dinky bubble car whilst more expensive and eye-catching presents lay ignored, much to the annoyance of my parents. By the age of 5, I was able to name virtually every car on the road, and with the newly acquired ability to read I began voraciously consuming anything and everything about motorised transport.

At 16, with a crisp, new provisional licence in my hand, I wobbled forth onto the Queen's highway astride the must-have two wheeler of the time, a Yamaha FS1E. That first love was intense, but short-lived, as the passing of another year opened up the possibility of bigger and faster machines, and a large number passed through my hands in a very short period.

The acquisition of a car licence merely increased my options when it came to spending all my disposable income on vehicles, and I started with a Citroën Ami 8 – a more comfortable and quicker relation of the 2CV. A huge mileage was promptly racked up forging a respect and admiration for these little cars, which has stayed with me to this day. It also gave me the opportunity to learn about mechanics, as money spent on garage bills was clearly a waste when it could be poured into the tank and burnt instead. Soon I was twirling the spanners not only on my car, but on those of other local enthusiasts as well.

My Suzuki GT500 loaded up ready for a trip to Italy in 1982.

Outside my garage, a 4 light Dyane and Diesel H van rub shoulders uneasily with a Fiesta (it wasn't all exotic) circa 1999.

The obsession well and truly had a grip by then, and I clocked up tens of thousands of miles criss-crossing Europe visiting far flung rallies and events, before deciding to leave a well-paid job for the insecurity of self employment fixing cars. The plus side, though, was being able to get behind the wheel of a huge variety of makes and models thus far denied to me. I initially concentrated on Citroëns, with the spartan pleasures of 2CV vans and saloons regularly interspersed by the swish luxury of a DS, and, on one occasion, an SM. My addiction became common knowledge, and soon other classic cars were arriving at the door – I have fond memories of MGCs, Costello V8 Bs, Spitfires, V6 Capris, VW Beetles and Vans, a PL17 Panhard, Peugeot 304s and 504s, and many more, including classics in the making such as the 205 and Golf GTis. Fleet contracts ensured that I had regular time working on Transits, Mercs and Ford Cargos as well, just to ensure diversity. Away from work I kept a small but ever-changing fleet of motorcycles, which fed my continuing need for two-wheeled action.

All things must pass, though, and after 15 years of such privileged pleasure a combination of factors spelt the end of my days on the tools. But every change in life comes with its own opportunities, and I decided to test the water and see if my accumulated experiences would be of interest to the classic car press. Fortunately they were, and I wrote articles and restored cars and motorcycles for Classic Car Mart, Practical Classics, Classic Motorcycle Mechanics, and many others. Buoyed by this, I approached Rod Grainger at Veloce to see if he would be interested in a buyer’s guide for my all-time favourite, the 2CV. He was, and the rest, as they say, is history. More guides followed, along with restoration manuals, some of which I have had the pleasure of seeing in other languages sitting on foreign bookshelves.

The 2CV I restored for Practical Classics.

I would like to say that age has tempered my passion, but sadly nothing could be further from the truth. I calculated recently that my lifetime’s association with vehicles has seen me clock up nearly a million miles, with around 200,000 of those covered on the Continent. Enough for any man, you might think, but the fire still burns strong: purely on a whim, I recently bought an old 2CV and hauled it around the back roads of the Balkans for eight weeks.

Bosnia about 6 weeks ago.

Is there no cure, or must I wait for the petrol to run out to finally release me from this affliction?
Mark Paxton

Click here to view all books by Mark Paxton.

Thursday 1 August 2013


Finally available in eBook format! The most comprehensive record of British cars in a single volume. Covers nearly 700 manufacturers and some 3700 models.

The most comprehensive account of British cars ever published in one volume, this book presents a huge amount of information - historical as well as technical - in a way which will serve the needs of the dedicated enthusiast, automotive historian and the general reader.

Click here for more information on Veloce Digital.