We are heading into the dreary parts of the year across the country (except you Southwest). A time when our toys get locked up in the garage to ride out the snow and we car nuts have to figure out what to do with ourselves.
There is no shortage of media out there that is tailored to gear-heads like ourselves. As we brace ourselves for the winter-to-come, I will be going through some of my favorite car related media to give you a respite from dinner parties and forced family interaction.
I am someone who likes to know more about whatever I am interested in. Lately, I have been downing almost any documentary I can find on the automotive world. Since I am a corner carver, I have been eagerly looking for readily available racing documentaries. This is by far not a definitive list so feel free to share your favorites in the comments!
In no particular order, here are some of my current favorite racing documentaries.
Senna (2010, Formula One)
Ayrton Senna is considered one of the greatest Formula One racing drivers to ever strap on a helmet. Sadly, his life was cut short by an accident at Imola in 1994. This documentary is not only great because of the in-depth look at Senna’s life but also because of its quality. This is a film that can even appeal to those that have no interest in motorsports or cars in general.
Significant Other Potential: If you are trying to get your significant other into racing, this is a good opening salvo.
Winning: The Racing Life of Paul Newman (2015, General)
Paul Newman is my spirit animal. Newman did not start his racing life until he was in his 40s. His role in 1969’s Winning required that he learn the racing tradecraft. He was hooked and the rest is history. This documentary was produced my Adam Corolla and Nate Smith. Their love for the subject mater shows throughout the movie. Even I was amazed about how involved Newman was with racing.
Significant Other Potential: Lets be honest here. Paul Newman appeals to men and women alike. His charisma and charm come through in this movie.
1 (2013, Formula One)
Comparatively, Formula One is very safe in its modern form. This was not the case throughout its storied history. It took the death of one of its brightest, Ayrton Senna, in 1994 for driver safety to be taken seriously. 1 takes the viewer through just how dangerous the sport used to be. For decades, drivers refused to wear safety belts because they would rather be thrown from the car than risk burning to death after a crash. It was a given that at least one driver would lose their lives during a season. While safety isn’t the sexiest subject matter out there, the story of 1 is quite compelling and you will get drawn in.
Significant Other Potential: If you enjoy any track time with your car, do not show this to your significant other. While modern racing is quite safe, this will only increase anxiety levels. Better watched only with racing friends.
Love The Beast (2009, General & Rally)
Like Paul Newman, Eric Bana is an avid racing enthusiast. While he might competitively drive Porsches, his greatest love is a Ford GT Falcon. Love The Beast is a tale of Bana’s relationship with this car. Both its ups and downs as he goes through his 25 year history with the vehicle. While the story doesn’t draw you in like some of the previous films, it is a good look at our relationship with our cars.
Significant Other Potential: Also like Newman, Bana isn’t hard to watch on screen. His personality shines through in the film. This also may be a good way to get one of the uninitiated to understand your relationship with your vehicle.
TT: Closer To The Edge (2011, Motorcycle Isle of Man)
TT gives you a glimpse into one of the most dangerous motorcycle road races in the world. The Isle of Man Tourist Trophy. To call these riders obsessed is putting it lightly. This film showcases those that have dared to give everything to win. It does an amazing job with connecting with the subjects of the film. You truly feel like you are right there with them. I am not a motorcycle fan and even I couldn’t stop watching.
Significant Other Potential: Unlike 1, TT is something you should be fine sharing with your significant other. The TT is so obscure of a race that it doesnt have much relation to anything you do on track.
Well, there you go folks. Hopefully this short list of suggestions will get you through some of the dull winter months while you wait for the roads to clear. Make sure to let me know what other racing documentaries get your racing blood boiling.