143 Main St Mornington (03) 5975 5034

DI WEBSDALE-MORRISSEY: Tues 17 Sept

thumbnail_Di WM - Brian Randall PhotographyDI WEBSDALE-MORRISSEY
On a Wing and a Prayer

Tuesday 17 September
7pm

IN STORE

Tickets $5
includes wine on arrival

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Join us to hear local author, Di Websdale-Morrissey, discuss her new book, which recounts a remarkable but little known episode in Melbourne’s history. The 1934 MacRobertson Air Race, from London to Melbourne, was an audacious plan to celebrate Melbourne’s centennial and became a heart-stopping event watched avidly around the world.


About the book…

On A Wing and a Prayer HROn a Wing and a Prayer
Release date: 3 September 2019

In 1934, Melbourne’s Lord Mayor announced a London-to-Melbourne air race to celebrate his city’s centenary.

The audacious plan captured imaginations across the globe- newspapers and magazines everywhere were filled with it; the world’s pilots scrambled to get sponsorship; and the organisers scrambled to get the rules straight and permission to fly in foreign air space. Sixty-four entrants from eleven countries signed up, but only twenty planes eventually took off on 20 October 1934. The winner arrived in Melbourne seventy-one hours later-but three planes crashed and two pilots died in the attempt.

The world followed the progress and applauded the winners, Britain’s Grovsenor House (outright) and The Netherlands’ Uiver (on handicap), but the real climax of the story is the astonishing efforts by the town of Albury in saving the Uiver as it battled through a fierce thunderstorm with no navigational aids, guiding the tiny plane to an emergency landing in the middle of the town with the most quick-thinking, imaginative response to its terrifying predicament.

This heroic race, considered the greatest single sporting event in the history of aviation, is a tale of eccentric characters, daring deeds and sublime courage. Di Websdale- Morrissey’s page-turning account will have readers holding their breaths, just as the world did eighty-five years ago.

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