Best Books of all time

I’m compiling a top 20 list of MUST READ sports/track&field books.

Your picks must fall into this category.

I’ll get the ball rolling with my first must have pick. Please follow my format.

Title: Pursuit of Excellence, The Olympic Story

Published by: The Associated Press & Grolier (Donbury Edition).

ISBN: 0-7172-8153-1

This book makes me sleep easy at night. Its a great read and worth having in any collection. Its beyond what you’d expect from a hardcover.

It features extensive background/history of the Olympic games from 1896 - 1976 & more!


Title: Speed Trap

Published by: St Martins Pr; 1st U.S. ed edition (January 1991)

ISBN-10: 0312048777

Summary Elite coach Charlie Francis shares the concepts that have made his athletes successful. He takes us from his own sprint career through coaching his athletes to the Seoul Olympics. Fascinating, inspiring, and full of valuable training concepts, it is the best book on track I have ever read.

Title: The Alan Wells book of sprinting

Published by: Distributed by Sterling Pub. Co; 1st ed edition (1983)

ISBN-10: 0715808427

Summary: Alan Well’s wife outlines the program that took Alan Wells from an 11.0h sprinter in his early 20s to Olympic champ by eliminating weights and replacing them with maximum calisthenics.

Not brown-nosing or anything but the best book about sprinting I’ve read is:

Title: Speed Trap.
Published by: Grafton Books
ISBN: 0-246-13756-6
Summary: as above

Mortac - if you like the Allan Wells book you should try to get a hold of two (I think) much better books from the same thought processes:

The Unique Double by George McNeill (ISBN 0 906391 57 1). Out of print but great if you can get it.

Athletics - My Way by Jim Bradley (details not to hand as I’ve lent out the book but currently in print).

Long since “lost” this book by loaning it to some bastard.

Winner Stakes All - Lynn Davies

Tracks the life of this long jumper from Wales during the 1960s and his interesting experiences on the way to being the shock winner of the 1964 Olympic gold medal in beating record-breakers Igor Ter-Ovanesyan and Ralph Boston, then his exhaustive preparations for his title defence in 1968 in Mexico where he - like the rest of the field - were shattered by Bob Beamon’s other-world winning leap.

The coach-athlete connection, the triumphs and disasters of being an athlete are revealed in all their drama. I found it an excellent and inciteful read.

must admit never heard of that one probably lost for all time nowadays

Similiar one for me David Hemery’s auobiography upto and including Munich 72. I also made the mistake of loaning it. Can’t remember its title but a very good insight into the preparation and competing in 2 Olympics.

This book was recommended to me by a UK sprints coach…I’m going to go to Borders tonight and purchase it.

The most insightful book I have read is Dave Hemerys book. He shows his logs from 68 and 72. It’s the only book I have seen where the athlete shows you what he is doing on a day to day basis,from start to finish. I recommend it to any coach or athlete.

my top 3 fav books
1)Where The Wild Things Are by Maurice Sendak

2)Speed Trap
quite possibly the ugliest front cover ever though lol

3)The Power of Your Subconsious Mind by Joseph Murphy

4) Brave New World by Aldous Huxley

o sorry mine werent all track related but just good books in general.

Never Die Easy: The Autobiography of Walter Payton (Paperback)
by Walter Payton (Author), Don Yaeger (Author)

Paperback: 288 pages
Publisher: Random House Trade Paperbacks (September 11, 2001)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 0375758216
ISBN-13: 978-0375758218

just got me a copy of Winner Stakes All - Lynn Davies on ebay for $10

Now that is a book! It was my favourite as a child!

damn skippy :smiley:

great book lol

Another very interesting read was the book put out by Mary Peters and her career culminating in the olympic gold in 72. She trained under very tough conditions. Her coach actually came from a weight lifting background.

Do you have the name of this book?

who u calling skippy :smiley:

Please maintain the format described in the first post, ISBN numbers at the very least are required.



Title - Mary P. Autobiography

Publisher- Stanly Paul Co. Hutchinson Publishing Group.

ISBN 009 122280x