Formula One Racing for Dummies (Jonathan Noble and Mark Hughes, Wiley, £14.99)

FORMULA One for dummies? Don't be fooled.

You're likely to have more than a passing interest in the sport already before you bury yourself in its 328 pages in preparation for the new season.

And you'll need to be more than a dummy to take it in.

The book's two authors, both established Grand Prix journalists, describe it as a study of the strategy, technology and spirit needed to win a Formula One race.

That's a lot closer to the mark.

Apart from the depth and simplicity of its information, the book's strength is its user-friendly index, which goes a long way to making it the perfect dipper's guide.

I have only two concerns.

First, among the reams of authoritative facts, figures and interpretation, there's a little too much padding.

The book doesn't need it.

Second, resist the temptation to position it beside you on your armchair grid when qualifying starts in Melbourne, on Saturday, March 8. You'll miss the action.

Mark Higgitt