moving on to correct cornering.
He might have won fame for his discipline and perfection as The Stig, but Collins peppers his story with examples of his own mistakes. Including some youthful crashes and experiences at Top Gear.
His book rattles along, although there is a major shortcoming — non-metric measurements — for Australian readers.
He has tapped some surprising sources, not just for the mechanics of driving but also the mentality of driving.
“So many times I get asked what I think are very obvious questions,” he says. “I’ve written it with my best understanding, but I’ve liberally stolen the good advice I got from the police and army. I freely admit I don’t know everything, and no one does.”
But he was also conscious that people expect The Stig to come through in his words.
“Everybody can and does want to learn. And you can make a huge difference with a relatively small effort. It was one of the coolest parts of the job as The Stig, taking a short time and seeing a huge difference.”
Now he hopes to make a difference with a manual that’s far more than a how-to book.
“I wanted to write something that was entertaining, but also taught people. I hope people will enjoy driving more,” Collins says.
“I didn’t want to write a manual that would put people to sleep. You might dip in and out of this book. There are stories from Bathurst and Top Gear and movies like James Bond. I wanted to make it something that properly explains how to drive, but that it was fun to drive.”