About Mike Hawthorn: On The Limit

In the early days of motorsport, daredevil drivers wowed the crowds as post-war Britain began to embrace this new adrenaline fuelled spectacle. But, with the cars reaching unprecedented speeds on the track, safety of both drivers and spectators were an afterthought.

Mike Hawthorn: On The Limit

One of the new, eager, racing fanatics leading Britain's charge to the top of the motorsport world was the charismatic, handsome and debonair Mike Hawthorn. Racing for iconic names such as Jaguar and Ferrari, and sporting his trademark bow tie, shock of wavy blonde hair and with his flamboyant driving style, Hawthorn captured the imagination of motorsport fans across the country. As fast as he raced on the track, Hawthorn lived just as fast off it with his social antics becoming the stuff of legend and there was always a woman or two under his arm.

Battling his greatest adversary, Stirling Moss, the rivalry culminated in the 1958 season when the pair went head-to-head as they raced to become Britain's first ever Formula 1 world champion.

Shortly after, Hawthorn announced his early retirement from racing - he had won the '24 Hours of Le Mans' a few years earlier in 1955, but was still haunted by his involvement in the disastrous crash that marred the race. Then, with the death of his teammate and close friend Peter Collins in the 1958 German Grand Prix, Hawthorn made the decision to quit. But a tragic end was to await him a mere six months after retiring and it would happen behind the wheel of his Jaguar Mark 1.

With contributors including David Coulthard and Murray Walker, On the Limit is the intriguing story of one of motorsport's most colourful and controversial characters as it explores the life of Britain's first Formula 1 world champion, a man who embodied the phrase 'live fast, die young'.