Welcome Catherine L. Byrne, Author of Taking Pole


Bitter racing rivals fight to win the championship, but a serious accident forces them to consider what they are actually fighting for.

Two bitter racing rivals have fought since their teenage years to beat each other to the championship title. When they are both caught up in a serious accident, however, their plans and conflicts fall apart. Thrown together to make sense of what happened, the aftermath forces them to wonder what they are actually fighting for.

Guest Post

People may read Taking Pole and think ‘this isn’t right—racing drivers don’t hate each other, get bitchy and have arguments on the podium.’

Believe me, they DO. Okay, them having romances with each other is just my fantasy, but really, if you read almost anything about racing drivers, you will see the extent they take strong dislikes to each other.

There are two Spanish MotoGP riders, Dani Pedrosa and Jorge Lorenzo, who used to hate each other so much that the King of Spain once had to order them to shake hands on the podium.

Valentino Rossi, the very successful multiple champion, had well publicised arguments with his once best friend Sete Gibernau—he accused Sete of getting his assistant to sweep the start line before a race so he got better traction when the race began.

Rossi also insisted that his team build a wall between his garage and that of his team mate Jorge Lorenzo so he couldn’t spy on him—he was known to dislike Lorenzo.

There are so many examples of racing drivers hating each other’s guts, it actually makes me laugh at how extreme they get.

But the riders I mentioned above have now got over their animosity, mainly due to the horrific on-track death of another rider they were always criticising, Marco Simoncelli. His sudden death made them realise how childishly they were behaving and grow up. It’s all drama in motorsport!
One reason for the prevalence of arguments and taking strong dislikes to each other is—as any commentator will tell you—many of the riders have never had a ‘real job’. They’ve grown up in motorsport and it’s all they’ve ever known—no 9-5 job packing boxes in a factory, serving burgers at MacDonald’s or cleaning toilets. So some of the young lads can get a bit spoilt and not know what the important things in life are. Until suddenly one day, a member of the racing community gets killed on track, and then they realise…

This may sound like I disapprove of racing drivers and their behaviour, but actually, I love them all and their arguments and pettiness. Most of them are very nice to their fans and arrange all sorts of competitions for them, on Facebook and their websites. It is just when they get on track and the ‘red mist’ descends, they go to extremes.

Racing drivers perform a difficult and dangerous job for our entertainment and deserve their high salaries. Especially bike riders, because obviously, bike racing is far, far more dangerous than car racing, because bikes have no roll cage, seatbelt, head and neck protection etc. If they crash their bikes, they can be thrown high in the air to land on their head, or another rider can run them over, or a bike can fall on or hit them.

Any type of injury can befall the riders and they are well known to carry on racing with all sorts of serious injuries, which they just get strapped up or anaesthetised. I have seen riders being carried onto the podium after a race because they are so injured they can’t walk or stand alone. But they insist on continuing to ride their bikes unless they are almost dead, and the salary isn’t the only reason for their determination—they keep on riding for the love of racing. They are warriors of the modern age jousting for the fans’ entertainment.

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About the Author

Catherine L Byrne writes stories about relationships which push buttons and provoke reactions from readers. She writes about both gay and straight relationships, depending on which characters in her books shout the loudest to have their stories told. 
An inquisitive author, she prefers writing about different situations in each book rather than writing a series about the same one—her stories range from 10th century Viking Britain, to modern educational settings and from mystery to romance. 
As she was born and bred in England and lives there with her family, this infuses her books with a distinctly English tone. She has been writing since as long as she can remember and Extasy Books have published her novels since 2014.


Thanks for hosting me April :)

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