Josef, The Indy Car Driver- Book Review

You’ve heard about Chris Workman’s new book, Josef, The Indy Car Driver but you aren’t sure if you are going to buy a copy. Hopefully this review will help you make that decision and the decision will be not to buy just one copy but multiple. There are several reasons I love this book. Let’s start at the beginning. Long before I knew much at all about the book I placed my order to buy two copies of the book. (Here is a story about it) I always try to support IndyCar sponsors when I can and do my best to promote the sport I love so it was a no-brainer that I would be purchasing the book. The author, Chris Workman, offered several packages to chose from. The book was made possible from the money received from the pre-orders. I chose an amount which would give me two copies of the book. I became a fan of IndyCar after reading AJ Foyt’s biography and knew that kids could just as easily become fans after reading a book about Josef. I had to get a copy to keep and a copy to share. 

The book was launched during the race at Road America. I had spoken with Chris a couple times through social media and planned to meet him at the book signing. My boys and I showed up early and had a chance to talk with Chris before the signing started. I loved hearing his passion for IndyCar and wanting to share that passion with others. Chris signed my copy of the book while we chatted but my boys and I got in line so we could meet Josef too. 

Josef Newgarden was in a horrible crash at the June 11th race at Texas Motor Speedway. He broke his right clavicle and fractured his wrist. I was amazed when I learned that Josef hoped to be racing at Road America just two weeks after the accident. Josef practiced in the car on Friday and was given the okay by his doctors to drive in Sunday’s race at Road America. Unbelievable!  In the book, Josef qualifies 9th and goes on to win the race. In reality Josef qualified 20th and finished 8th. While I’m sure only a win feels like a win, Josef must have been very pleased with the race. He moved up 12 positions and proved he has what it takes to be a race car driver. I know Team Penske and Ganassi have to be even more interested in hiring him after these last two weeks. 

The book, Josef, The Indy Car Driver shows Josef’s strength and determination to become a race car driver and to win a race. We saw that same determination in his drive with broken bones at Road America. While the book is a fictitious account of the weekend in which Josef wins the race, we still saw a victory for Josef in the amazing run he had moving up 12 positions. 

The book begins with acknowledgements and a forward by Leigh Diffey. These pages are followed by a welcome page which gives some information for kids not familiar with the IndyCar Series. It explains the different tracks the cars race on, pit stops, the championship, the tires used, horsepower and what open-wheel means. The story begins  when Grandpa Jamie arrives in Josef’s garage with his grandchildren. Josef explains how the car works, what push-to-pass does and how Josef became an IndyCar driver. The story moves through qualifying and then to the race. The race portion references many of the turns at Road America as Josef works his way up to the race lead and the win. After the story ends there is a page that tells kids how they can become IndyCar drivers with a big focus on studying hard in school, eating right and exercising. 

I enjoyed the story and loved the extra pages with background information. The illustrations, which are also done by Chris Workman, are beautifully done and very recognizable if you have attended Road America. There is great detail in them if you look close. Chris explained to me how he had to update the aero kits from his first draft. 

The book is available for $19.99 through or However, I suggest purchasing through where a coloring book is also available. Also please note that Chris Workman is doing his part to help others.  A portion of the proceeds, approximately $1 per book will go to charity. Chris has partnered with both Racing for Kids and Racing for Cancer. 

Honestly do you need another reason to buy this book. I have one copy and two on the way. I might need to purchase more for our school library. I love that I can share my passion for racing through a children’s book. I hope this book does incredibly well and am looking forward to Chris’s next book titled The Spectacle all about the Indianapolis 500. 

What are your thoughts on the book?  Do you have a copy yet?