HarperCollins is to publish an autobiography from three-time World Superbike Champion Jonathan Rea MBE.
HarperNonFiction publisher Ed Faulkner bought world rights from Joanne McNeill at McNeill Communications. The title will be co-authored by Steve Booth with publication set for October 2018.
The 31-year-old father of two from Northern Ireland is the current World Superbike Champion and made history by equalling Carl Fogarty’s all-time career record of 59 race wins earlier this month. He was runner up at last year’s BBC Sports Personality of The Year and is the only rider to have ever won the championship for three years in succession and together with his Kawasaki Racing Team.
The book will chart the life and career “of a man who was seemingly destined for the motorbike racing world”. His grandfather was the first sponsor of five times World Champion Joey Dunlop and his father was a former Isle of Man TT winner. He has succeeded in Superbikes after several potential career-ending scrapes including smashing his femur in a crash, aged 17, when doctors told him he would never race again.
A HarperCollins spokesperson said: “With unwavering determination, and gaining huge victories in this ultra-competitive sport, this thrilling autobiography will get into the head of a man who has managed to rise to the top of one of the most skilled and dangerous sports in the world.”
Rea said: “The team has been very supportive of me and my co-author, and long-time friend, Steve Booth. It’s only now when I recall the last few decades with him I realise the incredibly special journey I am on and those who’ve been part it. It hasn’t all been plain sailing though and there have been a lot of life lessons learned along the way.”
He said that the memoir would “be very open and honest about how I’ve been able to make my dreams and ambitions become a reality”.
Faulkner added: “Jonathan Rea is a motorcycling legend and is on track to become the greatest British motorcycle racer of all time, but there is a lot more to this articulate but very well-grounded father, son, brother and husband.
“Off the track he is a family man through and through and he is one of the first riders to take his wife and children with him on the road, to each race, when-ever he can. He has a huge number of fans who follow him all over the world and all of these people (and more) will be excited to read his story when we publish this autumn. We are thrilled to be his publisher.”
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