Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Race Fan’s Book Shelf: ‘Racing to Win,’ an Inside Look at Gibbs


Photo: Paula Thompson/Skirts & Scuffs
As a life-long resident of the Buffalo, New York area, I shouldn’t like Joe Gibbs – after all, as coach of the Washington Redskins, he was responsible for the demise of the Buffalo Bills in Super Bowl XXVI. Thankfully, I’m not a football fan – but I am a fan of Gibbs.

Joe Gibbs is a Pro Football Hall of Famer, three-time Super Bowl championship coach, three-time NASCAR Cup Series championship team owner and two-time NHRA championship team owner. He’s also a devout Christian and motivational person who is not afraid to share his views on life, sports and religion – something he does in his 2003 book Racing to Win and two other books he had a hand in writing, Joe Gibbs: Fourth and One (1992) and Game Plan for Life (2009).

Racing to Win is not an autobiography or a memoir, but rather a collection of stories from Gibbs’ life used as lessons to help one devise a “game plan for life.” Gibbs breaks down the book into six sections – career, finance, team building, relationships, moral choices and health – and weaves his life tales throughout, along with tales of how he grew with Christ thanks to his problems and his choices, and how he put together a strong network of people over the years.

Racing to Win may not be for everyone, considering the religious tones throughout the book, but there are principles at the end of each section that make sense whether you have a strong religious foundation or not. I learned much about Gibbs and his background – both professional and personal – by reading the book, and thank him for teaching the rest of us through his honesty.

If you are interested in learning more about Gibbs’ motivational mission, visit his website, http://www.gameplanforlife.com/.

Racing to Win and other books reviewed as part of Race Fan’s Book Shelf can be purchased through Amazon.com.

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