Reaching 650 million TV viewers in 188 countries, the FIA World Touring Car Championship (WTCC) is contested by big-name car manufacturers in pursuit of public glory. On behalf of these manufacturers, their sponsors, and the WTCC’s fans, series promoter KSO publishes an end-of-season yearbook. I was assigned the task of editing and production-managing the first edition of this book, establishing a structure and style for future editions to follow.
My editing and writing role
This was a hardback book, its 112 pages (230x303mm) containing almost 400 photos, 25 maps and illustrations, and 23,000 words. My job was to determine the contents and page allocations; commission and liaise with contributing writers, photographers, illustrators, and graphic designers; edit copy; write some of the leading stories; and read proofs. The entire project had to be turned-around in a tight timescale: the WTCC season didn’t end until November 20, yet the book had to be produced in the UK, printed in China, and shipped to manufacturers all over Europe in time for them to send out copies as gifts for Christmas. A good example of my ability to complete a significant quantity of work to a faultlessly high standard while under time pressures.
The book contained a welcome from FIA President Max Mosley; stories about the origins and philosophy of the WTCC (I coined the phrase ‘Real cars, real racing,’ which the WTCC subsequently adopted in marketing communications); assessments of the top ten drivers and interviews with two of them; a feature about driver Alex Zanardi, who was making a heroic return to motorsport four years after losing both legs in a violent racing accident; a behind-the-scenes look at how Eurosport delivers its TV broadcasts from races all over the globe; reports of all 20 races, with short profiles of the countries hosting them; seasonal statistics; and detailed seasonal summaries of all the teams.
This first edition of the book was well received by the all-important motor manufacturers, as well as fans of touring car racing, and proved the concept worth repeating in following years.