Book Review – Total Competition: Lessons in Strategy from Formula One by Ross Brawn and Adam Parr

Described as the “most compelling, comprehensive and revealing insights into what it takes to get to the top in Formula One that has ever been published” by Ross Brawn and Adam Parr, Total Competition, gives readers a fascinating insight into the world of Formula 1 strategy through the eyes of one of the greatest minds in the sport: Ross Brawn 

If you are looking for the step by step guide on how to win in Formula 1, this book may not be the exact answer that you’ve been looking for, but there are a lot of strategies you can use in daily life. 

Technical aspects of racing in Formula 1 don’t dominate this book, however, it does give a lot of insights into the inside world of the Formula 1 paddock, giving a great deal of attention to the strategies, politics, and relationships that surround the teams in the racing arena.

Total Competition: Lessons in Strategy from Formula One is more than just a memoir of Ross Brawn’s time in pit lane, it is also part self-help book, part management book, and part tribute to Sun Tzu’s ‘The Art of War’ thanks to the style of co-author Adam Parr, who spent several seasons in the trenches with Williams. 

What We Love About Total Competition: Lessons in Strategy from Formula One

Spoiler alert – this is not a tell-all book.


Total Competition looks more at how Ross Brawn successfully became one of the legends of F1 pondering more on the lessons he had learned in his career, his management techniques and philosophy, and discusses the strategies that he used in his time on the pit wall.

The exploration and observation of one of the most influential team managers, owners, and now racing organisers in the history of Formula One are given more emphasis, while Brawn also managed to insert some humility with his remarks that hard work and luck has contributed more to his success than his innate ability. 

Adam Parr has seemingly targeted non-race fan readers, making it appear that Total Competition is more than just a book for Formula One hardcore fans and enthusiasts, by presenting it as a management book. 

Parr shares ideas and lessons that can be applied in all areas of leadership, and explains why leaders, not only in the racing arena, must ensure that all resources are geared towards achieving a specific goal over and over again, not only to survive in the long run but also to reach the destination that you and your team had set – and that is, to win. 

The book covers not only the F1 aspect, but also business, entrepreneurial, and personal views. 

All in all, the book is well written, though some might find passages such as the ‘Q&A’ style a bit boring.

Total Competition: Lessons in Strategy from Formula One has given its readers insights into F1, lessons of leadership in the professional & business arena, and it brings you a glimpse of the world of Formula One.

Where To Buy Total Competition: Lessons in Strategy from Formula One

You can buy Total Competition from Amazon.

Total Competition: Lessons in Strategy from Formula One Product Details


Publisher: Simon & Schuster; UK ed. edition (November 3, 2016)

Language: English

ISBN-10: 1471162354

ISBN-13: 978-1471162350

Product Dimensions: 9.7 x 1.1 x 6.5 inches

Shipping Weight: 1.2 pounds

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