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William Dean M.B.E.
ARRSE Rating
5 Mushroom Heads
When I first picked up this book, I had no idea of its contents, I presumed it was something to do with off road driving skills, but I keep an open mind and always read the books thoroughly.

Well its nothing to do with off-roading with a powered vehicle!

Instead it's a a fantastic book about one man's idea and its fruition into a new type of outdoor activity that would encompass everybody, doing away with the Alpha male mentality so common in many outdoor sports. It's a real team sport, and in many ways borrows from the military idea of teamwork

After a period with the F.O. he moved to the States and enrolled at the Harvard school of business, but with the intention of starting his own business rather than making money on the back of other people; his insight into the American culture there is eye opening.

The book starts with an interview at the top of a ski slope, and what he should have told the reporter. That would have been funny, but a sure fire business killer; instead he was honest, upbeat and promoted his vision without bullshit or arrogance (a rare commodity these days).

His struggles and failures are all laid out honestly and make the book much better for it.

Eventually he sees his dream start off, and then like Topsy it grows. Learning to build a business up, employ the right sort of people, getting rid of the wrong sort (!) and fend off litigation from a mad Englishman make the book even more rewarding and humorous.

One of the nicest parts is when his relationship manager at Citibank advises him just how much his bank loan for Harvard will be costing very soon; a few days later he pays the entire amount off in one go.

His dream to create a sport that encompasses friendship, team work, and a sense of community finally comes to fruition, The way in which he interacts with another sporting body trying to score points, and eventually winds up best friends teaches us a lesson in good business management.

He narrates the story of some of the Mudders and teams that have entered against enormous odds, and how friendships have been created that will last a lifetime.

I won't spoil the book by relating any more of its contents, but I think as well as being an essential read for any one involved in teamwork and creativity, it will also be a fantastic read for any of the crazy folk who undertake this sport.

It is 250 pages with photographs and an insight into the catalyst behind the creation of a great new sport that puts something back into peoples lives.

I read the book over a few days, and enjoyed every minute of it.

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