Now the 24th series of Top Gear has drawn to a close, it’s time to reflect on what has been yet another new chapter in the book of the British show. There have been a lot of changes in the last few years. The loss of Clarkson, Hammond, and May shook the viewership into fear, and then the smattering of presenters for series 23 had us completely confused and annoyed with Chris Evans’ awful attempt at being something close to funny (or a good host at all for that matter).
Series 24 was the best attempt the BBC has made as of late, however. Especially since we now know where everyone stands, what their role is, and who the presenters actually are. Again, just like the previous equation, a trio seems to work.
But because we’re happy folks here at Grand Tour Nation, we’re not going to focus on the bad bits (of which there are many, don’t worry, we’re aware), we’re going to focus on the best bits. The bits that made us laugh, made our jaws drop in awe, or made us wish we were the ones in front of the camera instead of them. Let us begin!
Driving the Ferrari FXX-K
There’s no better way to start the series than with a track-only Ferrari pushing more than 1000hp and worth upwards of £3 million. Even if you don’t like Chris Harris as a presenter, you have to admit, his driving is superb. And it’s never a bad thing to see the fastest Ferrari ever made being hurled around a track sideways. What a lovely appetiser to begin the series with.
Have you ever seen such a guilt ridden face as the one shown here as Chris Harris shunts Matt in their race around a quarry in Kazakhstan? This was the first adventure with all three presenters and it gave a hint of their chemistry together. They have a long way to go, but the three showed great promise in where future series of Top Gear may take us.
Drifting an Alfa Through a Hole
If you’ve seen Chris Harris’s YouTube channel, you must know how good a driver he is. He was one of the first journalists to be given the Holy Trinity (P1, Laf, 918) and can drift a car around a track at the click of your fingers. Posting an Alfa Romeo through an Alfa Romeo shaped hole however, turned out to be rather difficult – as the windshield soon found out.
Sabine shows off on the Nürburgring
Watching Sabine lap the Nürburgring is like watching Leonardo da Vinci paint the Mona Lisa, and this time we had Rory looking squeamish in the passenger seat to laugh over. In this film a Clubsport S with the talented racing driver at the wheel overtakes £1,000,000 worth of supercars – a portrayal of what the hot hatch (or any car) is truly capable of with the right driver.
The Bugatti Chiron VS Matt LeBlanc
This reminded me very much of the old Top Gear, more specifically, the race between the Clarkson driving the Veyron and James’ rickety old plane. Weirdly, I really enjoyed the back and forth taunting between Chris and Matt, and am looking forward to more of these races in the next series. A very enjoyable film with some beautiful machinery to gawp over.
Extreme off-road racing – Chris VS Sabine
Ever wanted to know who’d be better at off-road racing, Chris or Sabine? No? Me neither. But I loved the film nonetheless. With Matt and Eddie assisting them, they took on the ‘King of the Hammers’ – a mixture off rock-crawling and desert racing – in their kitted out vehicles against seasoned professionals. This was a tense and exciting film that really showed off the driving talent of both Chris and Sabine, while also adding to the mix some tension and excitement.
Top Gear VS the racers of Cuba
Taking the Cubans on in a drag race was a loss waiting to happen, but putting a few corners in the mix certainly put the cat among the pigeons. So that’s exactly what they did. Chris and Rory introduce their classic Camaro and Maserati Biturbo to the people of Cuba, and even though the Camaro gets most of the attention, Chris takes the win towards the end of the film. It was great to see Rory let loose again, especially with a car I’ve wanted to own for quite a while now, and of course, letting Chris loose on any circuit is a good thing.
Joey drives the Avtoros Shaman
I’ve always had a soft sport for ridiculous, impractical off-roaders such as this thing. But for me, watching it being put in stupid scenarios while being driven by Matt puts the cherry on the top. Saving a trapped child from the bottom of a well, saving naked hikers from the top of a hill, and even making use of its amphibious capabilities and rescuing a stranded boat – this truck can do it all. I just wouldn’t want to be the one to clean the back seats…
Let me know what you thought of series 24 of Top Gear, and tell me in the comments your favourite bits! After a shaky start, I’m definitely looking forward to the next series!