It comes as no surprise that Jeremy Clarkson may not be the first to tune into the all new Top Gear featuring Chris Harris, Andrew “Freddy” Flintoff and Paddy McGuinness after he was sacked by the BBC for his disagreement with producer, Oisin Tymon.
However, it would appear that the wounds run deeper for Clarkson than expected – with him opening up last November about how he feels about Top Gear even after so many years have passed:
“I wish them all the very best but I don’t watch it. It was my baby and then it got taken away and they’ve got it now. It’s like if you’ve got a baby and it’s put up for adoption you hope the baby’s brought up very well.”
However, while he feels Top Gear was his baby and is saddened to see it in the hands of someone else, he continued to say that he was happy focussing on his own show, speaking specifically about the new Grand Tour format which focusses on specials rather than a studio audience:
“There is no question that people prefer the specials when we whizz off and go and do something incredible, compared to the studio side of it. The other problem we have is time. Doing 12 or 13 shows a year is phenomenally time-consuming and it was sort of wiping us out, so now we can just concentrate on the specials and make them even better than they were.”
Clarkson has also famously clashed with Chris Evans who replaced Jeremy on Top Gear back in 2015. He said during his column in The Sun at the time:
“I hope Chris enjoys running what, for the next couple of weeks, is the world’s biggest car show.”
As well as this, Clarkson also claimed during the time that the BBC actually held meetings with him to get him back on the show. However, Clarkson is said to have refused due to there being far too much history between him and the BBC at that point:
“I had a meeting with a BBC executive last week [back in 2015] and they asked if I’d come back to Top Gear. Too much has gone on. After I’d been compared to Jimmy Savile by someone from the BBC and it was splashed all over a Sunday newspaper, how could I go back?
I mean, I wouldn’t be too happy being compared to someone as monstrous as Jimmy Savile and it being plastered all over the press either. Clarkson continued:
“The spotlight would have been on me and the show would end up being neutered. It would be difficult to do anything without interference. It would have been impossible to make the show I’d want to make. I think they knew this so that’s why they gave the job to Chris so soon after I met them.”
I would imagine that Chris, as a massive car collector and enthusiast, would have been extremely excited to take the helm at Top Gear – so may not have been too pleased with Jeremy’s comments. He responded on his Radio 2 show:
“Well, as to whether Jeremy was offered his old job back or not, either outside or inside his own head he still said no to the voices. Therefore, I shall continue my resurrection of the world’s favourite television car show.”
As it turns out, Chris’ ‘resurrection’ of the worlds favourite television car show was short lived as he only lasted the one season before being replaced.