Ian Hutchinson – ‘Hutchy’ to his many thousands of fans – is a motorcycle racer like few others. A road racer to the core, he has enjoyed spectacular success at the Isle of Man TT, the North West 200 and the Ulster Grand Prix, but his own story goes far beyond even those triumphs.
In the summer of 2010, Hutchy set the record for most wins in a single Isle of Man TT festival – five in all – having already won the Supersport class at the North West 200 in Northern Ireland. Then disaster struck. At a British Supersport round in September that year, he crashed heavily after being struck by another rider’s machine, breaking his left leg so badly that at one stage it was feared it might have to be amputated. After many surgical operations and a long period of recovery, he fractured the same leg in 2012 while practising exhibition-riding for a motorycle show in London.
Yet not even these disasters could keep the Yorkshireman from racing. After modifications to the gear levers and rear brakes on his race machines, he went out and won the 2013 Macau Grand Prix.Two years later saw an even more staggering return to form, when he secured three wins, a second and a third place at the 2015 Isle of Man TT, also winning the Joey Dunlop TT Championship Trophy for that year.
Hutchy: Miracle Man is a book not only for fans of motorcycle road racing, but for anyone interested in the life and career of a brilliant rider and an extraordinarily brave and enduring man, a hugely popular figure not just for his achievements, but for his unassuming modesty, kindness and humour.
***** *** *******
Anybody who knows me well will tell you that I have a bit of a thing for motorcycles, I always have and part of that obsession also includes racing. While not a racer myself, I have a keen interest in many aspects of this awesome sport including the awe-inspiring British and Irish road-racing scene which includes incredible events such as the Isle of Man TT (Tourist Trophy) and the Ulster Grand Prix, raced on closed public roads at almost unbelievable speeds. One of the best riders to ever have turned a wheel in these amazing races is a tough young chap from Yorkshire by the name of Ian Hutchinson and this is his autobiography.
It’s an easy to read insight into Hutchy’s main racing moments, but I felt it lacked any real candor or exploration of the man himself. I can’t help but think that this has been written far too early. After a few years, when Ian has had more time to reflect on his life (including the non-racing stuff), perhaps he could give us a more complete picture of who he is.
This book is mostly made up of things that those of us who follow motorcycle road racing have already learned, it contains no new revelations or information normally reserved for an autobiography like this. With his incredible racing record (including THAT amazing 2010 TT!) and his inspirational comeback from horrendous injury, I’m certain that there must be so much more to this bloke than he shows us here.
I’m glad to have read it and don’t regret the time investment, but do I know any more about Hutchy after reading it? Nope. After finishing a good biography of a person, you should feel as though you’ve just spent a couple of hours with them over some beers, listening to their life story and feeling as though you know them almost as well as their mates. In this, Hutchy unfortunately keeps us shut out.
Anyway, if he does give us another chance to get to know him in the future, I will certainly read it. After all, he’s still one of my heroes.
3/5 for concept
2/5 for delivery
2/5 for entertainment
= 2.3 out of 5