A fascinating and meticulously researched true account of Cold War intrigue and espionage woven together with the world’s fastest motorsports
Hours of personal interviews with the major participants will give the reader an amazing view into the daring worlds of hydroplane and airplane racing
Gloriously illustrated throughout with many previously unpublished images
A gripping read that takes the reader inside the cockpit of some of the fastest boats and planes ever built
Mira Slovak was born in Czechoslovakia and endured both the Nazi occupation and brutal Russian liberation. He joined the Czech Air force, rising to captain by the age of 21. When he could no longer tolerate life under the Communists, Slovak hijacked an airliner and flew across the Iron Curtain to freedom.
He went to work for the CIA and was eventually sent to the US and given a job as Bill Boeing Jr’s personal pilot. When Boeing began racing hydroplanes in the late 1950s, Slovak was his driver. During his ten-year career as a hydroplane driver, he won many races and two national championships. He met presidents and dated movie starlets.
After a serious hydroplane accident, Slovak switched to airplanes where he won another national championship. When he retired from racing, he became a stunt pilot and public speaker, and talked about the value of freedom and how we should value it above everything else.
He outlasted Communism and when it collapsed in 1990, he returned to his home, only to realise that his true home was, and always would, be the United States.
234 x 156 mm
1 May 2018
33 black-and-white photographs
David Williams is the Executive Director of the Hydroplane and Raceboat Museum and has been involved in hydroplane racing his whole life. Through his work with the museum, he has restored over a dozen of the world’s most famous race boats and has become one of the foremost authorities on hydroplanes. He has been driving raceboats for over 40 years. Williams was the raceboat co-ordinator and primary stunt driver for the MGM film Madison. He began writing about racing in 2000 and A Race to Freedom: The Mira Slovak Story is his ninth book on the sport.