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It is what it is - David Coulthard - The Autobiography

Updated on November 4, 2014

Ex-racing driver and now Formula 1 commentator

I'm a huge Formula 1 fan and have been watching it, mainly on TV, for years and years. I remember when James Hunt won the championship - that's how long I've been watching. I also love to read - fiction, biographies, factual - you name it, I read it. So for me, what better than a book that combines an ex-Formula 1 driver and the story of his life?

David Coulthard's It is what it is is an interesting read and tells you about the early years of the boy and man, and goes on to cover his racing career, explaining the twists and turns of his life along the way. If you're interested in F1 and his career this is a good way to find out more about 'the real DC' so I thought I would share my review with you and hopefully you may learn a bit about him along the way...

DC in a MacLaren 2004

2004 Montreal Grand Prix - MacLaren
2004 Montreal Grand Prix - MacLaren | Source

Finding out about The Real DC?

I was really looking forward to reading this book. I'm a massive F1 fan - I've been following it since I was young - and though I've never been the biggest 'DC' follower when he was racing, since he launched his TV commentary career I've been intrigued by the apparent new personality that has manifested itself, in this new and improved version of the man. So I wanted to read this book to see what I'd missed - to see what the media had missed - during his racing career.

It turns out that I hadn't missed anything. Well that's not true, I hadn't realised there was a lack of self-confidence when speaking to crowds, that though he'd been labelled a 'ladies man' - with some justification - all he was really interested in was finding his own version of his parents' happy marriage. But what I've come to realise whilst reading this book, is that actually his public life during his time as a racing driver was a fairly accurate representation of his real life.

Of course, I didn't know all the details of his background. Yes, he lived in Twynholm, Scotland and yes, he started out in karting, but I wasn't fully aware of his journey to F1. I wasn't aware for example of David receiving a phone call at the tender age of eighteen from legendary racing driver Jackie Stewart, wanting to sign him up for his 'staircase of talent', or that he'd won at Le Mans in 1993, or that he'd been indirectly assessed by the great Ayrton Senna as being a suitable test driver for the Williams race team.

It is what it is - on Amazon

It Is What It Is
It Is What It Is

This great book from his early years and covering his racing career.


2012 at Brands Hatch

David Coulthard - Formula Ford 2012 - Brands Hatch
David Coulthard - Formula Ford 2012 - Brands Hatch | Source

The Conclusion - It is what it is!

There were things I'd forgotten too. Like the fact he'd had a near-death experience during a flight to Nice. One of the engines on the private Learjet failed meaning they had to make an emergency landing at Lyon instead. Unfortunately, the pilot came in too low and too slow and was due to miss the end of the runway. Deciding to go full throttle and try again the pilot made a fatal mistake; because they only had one engine the plane slammed sideways as the pilot used the engine again, and the aircraft rotated violently when the tip of the wing hit the ground causing the nose to smash into the runway, killing the two men in the cockpit. Luckily all the passengers escaped with relatively minor injuries considering their circumstances.

I guess the point of any review is about whether or not you would recommend the book to someone else. I can honestly say I did enjoy this book. It's written as David speaks and it covers all the things you would expect from an autobiography. If you're interested in the book like I was, to gain some unknown, unexpected insight into the racing driver, I can't say that it enlightened me much, there's no grand revelation. If though you're a DC fan, don't know much about him or just want what you know confirming from the horse's mouth so to speak, then this is for you. All I can say is - it is what it is.

Which brings me to a rather peculiar conclusion. That somewhere since the end of this book and the initial period of his TV career David Coulthard has changed, or so it would seem. Whether that's due to his happy and stable family life, or the evaporation of pressures that don't exist in his current career, I couldn't say. But it does mean that I'm still as intrigued as I was before I read the book - so DC, I'm looking forward to the next one!

Interesting to find out a little more...

4 stars for It Is What It Is

Other David Coulthard books on Amazon

David's Diary: The Quest for the Formula 1 1998 World Championship
David's Diary: The Quest for the Formula 1 1998 World Championship

From the driver's perspective - a championship contender.

David Coulthard - The Flying Scotsman
David Coulthard - The Flying Scotsman

This is about his early motor sport years.


© 2013 DreyaB

Do you watch Formula 1?

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    • DreyaB profile image

      DreyaB 2 years ago from France

      Thanks Susan - that's much appreciated coming from you and thanks so much for stopping by. :0)

    • SusanDeppner profile image

      Susan Deppner 2 years ago from Arkansas USA

      Good review!

    • DreyaB profile image

      DreyaB 3 years ago from France

      @Nancy Hardin: Wow, thanks Nancy! I hope she enjoys it and thanks so much for sharing. :0)

    • Nancy Hardin profile image

      Nancy Carol Brown Hardin 3 years ago from Las Vegas, NV

      No but my friend does. I'm sure she'd be thrilled to read this, so I'm sending her the link. Well done!

    • DreyaB profile image

      DreyaB 4 years ago from France

      @BritFlorida: That is fantastic. I had no idea! Thank you for visiting and liking my lens. I was just looking at your cozy decor lens, but the computer stuck...

    • BritFlorida profile image

      Jackie Jackson 4 years ago from Fort Lauderdale

      How wonderful to meet a fellow Yorkshirewoman who's living abroad AND is also a Formula One fan!

    • DreyaB profile image

      DreyaB 4 years ago from France

      @suepogson: Thanks Sue! I'm glad you liked it. I'm fairly new on here so it's great to know that it worked for you. I love books, so hope to have more of these in the future. Many thanks. :0)

    • suepogson profile image

      suepogson 4 years ago

      This was a really interesting read ... and ... honesty time! I'm trying to figure out the best way to put together a book review and this was a great example to give me ideas. Thank you!

    • DreyaB profile image

      DreyaB 4 years ago from France

      @Dressage Husband: Many thanks for the welcome. I've never had the chance to meet him but tend to agree with you. Thanks for reading and stopping by...

    • Dressage Husband profile image

      Stephen J Parkin 4 years ago from Pine Grove, Nova Scotia, Canada

      I have actually met and talked to DC at length at the main Tag Heura store in Riyadh Saudi Arabia whilst he was driving the Mercedes Mclaren and I assure you he is still a mystery! I really do not think that he was driven as a driver (like Senna and Mansell) more he was extremely talented and could do it more like Prost. The thing is winning the championship was never his motivation, I had the feeling that a bit like Hunt the whole sport actually sickened him. I suspect like you say he was probably more family oriented and risking his neck everyday lost it's appeal to him as he matured. I too would love to know his opinion on this! Welcome to Squidoo!