Arthur Richardson
Book Description

The 48 pages softcover booklet has 'perfect-binding' construction comprising the original Dunlop booklet to which newspaper articles are incorporated at the relevant stages of the feat as related. Archive photography from the Battye Library and other sources add flavour to the rather terse journalist's portrayal of Richardson's challenges, viscitudes he encountered, and as reported from remote locations around Australia (the route).

Copies of newspaper articles of the time validate the extraordinary version of events reported in the original 1900 Dunlop publication. Their quality reflects degradation of newpapers in archives at TROVE. Family documents of his correspondence to Percy Armstrong (of Armstrong cycles) belie White supporters' dismissing Richardson's gamble. WA Historical Cycling Club's biopic of Armstrong suggests the cycle shop the Richardson brothers ran (Arthur, Gus, Frank and perhaps Herb) was one of Percy's enterprises as a franchise. The brothers may have even been couriers for Percy's message service around Kalgoorlie. Percy's personal support for the 'circumcyle' seems unusually strong. Perhaps he saw it as advertising his business. Arthur's biopic describes his history and background.

Arthur carfully considered the risks as noted in the book, and made provision that proved clearly much better than the Whites'. Alex White and McKay would not have finished without the guidance Richardson gave them while recuperating at Powell's Creek. Both contestants had then travelled roughly the same distance. The White team believed they had traversed the worst of the journey to that stage. Richardson knew better and gave advice as to the easier route through the Kimberley from what they planned. Frank White, the leader, gave up the 'race' at Darwin. The two others went on, following roughly Richardson's route from Perth. 

Brett Harris wrote in his "Tour de Oz" of an incredible race, predominantly from the (losing) Wright viewpoint, which readers can pursue  independently.

Of course, Richardson was first to make the 'circumcycle' of Australia by reaching Perth before the East-Coast team did.

Ben Dickenson  reviewed the book 30 Dec, 2017 in the POST Newspaper (52000 copies weekly plus on-line readers).