It’s been much too long since we have watched the genuine banter displayed in their most natural of environments. On a set, in the midst of tire smoke, enjoying the view of an amazing adventure or just the sounds laughter and smiles on their ugly faces, the boys we know as Jeremy Clarkson, Richard Hammond and James May are finally back to share their amazing times with us.
For those of you who might have forgotten, we wanted to take a look back at the 20 months that have gotten us here, so we can all appreciate where we are about to go.
Top Gear was the number one television show in the world in 2015. Jeremy Clarkson was at the top of the ratings mountain and loads of money was being made for the suits at the BBC. But as many successful people can tell you, when there are great times, there is also the bad and for fans to truly understand what that led to the infamous punch.
May 6, 2014 – Jeremy Clarkson divorces his second wife, Alex Hall after 21 years of marriage.
After 21 years in a marriage that weathered rumoured infidelities and plenty of career controversies, Jeremy Clarkson is heading for a second divorce. – Telegraph
June 8, 2014 – Jeremy writes about dealing with his mother’s death
“So there I was, in Russia, in the middle of a Top Gear tour, trying to organise her funeral and tell the children and sort out all the legal stuff, with the BBC moaning at me in one ear and a reporter twittering on in the other, and I knew that if I wept, which is what I wanted to do, because I was very close to my mother, the Daily Mirror would run pictures and claim they were tears of shame. It was a gruesome time.” – The Sunday Times
March 14, 2015 – Jeremy Clarkson punches Top Gear Producer, Oisin Tymon
“The presenter of Top Gear, who has been suspended pending an internal BBC investigation into his conduct at a hotel in Yorkshire during filming of the show, is said to have threatened to have Tymon sacked during the heated row over food.” – Telegraph
July 7, 2015 – Jeremy Clarkson rumored to bring Automotive Show to Netflix
“The rumor has been circulating for awhile that Jeremy Clarkson, Richard Hammond and James May were planning to take their style of automotive TV to Netflix. Now, a British paper lends evidence to that theory: The Mirror reports that the trio agreed to a non-compete clause that bans them from doing a British car show until April 2017.
That clause, however, doesn’t apply to streaming video services like Netflix or Amazon. And while The Mirror‘s unnamed source says ITV has made the trio “a great offer,” it sounds like Clarkson’s been in chats with at least one of the streaming services.” – Road and Track
July 31, 2015 – Amazon buys the right to distribute Jeremy Clarkson’s new automotive show with Richard Hammond and James May
“Jeremy Clarkson’s contract had a “no compete” clause. After finishing with Top Gear he isn’t allowed to have a motoring show on British TV until 2017. That suits Amazon because it will still have the ability to sell the show in markets where it has no presence currently. For the US and UK, obviously, Amazon will be using it to sell Prime subscriptions.
In the UK Amazon Prime trails behind Netflix in terms of subscribers, and no doubt the company is hoping that the draw of the former Top Gear crew will be tempting enough to boost those numbers.” – Forbes
October 7, 2015 – The Grand Tour Begins Filming in Portugal
With a skeleton crew, filming for Amazon Prime's new motoring programme has begun. pic.twitter.com/8PaYvke5il
— Jeremy Clarkson (@JeremyClarkson) October 7, 2015
November 6, 2015 – W Chumps and Sons Office begin to look busy
Actual work happening at W Chump and Sons of London. pic.twitter.com/DmCZoSGbwH
— Jeremy Clarkson (@JeremyClarkson) November 6, 2015
July 17, 2016 – The first studio day for The Grand Tour in South Africa
This is it. The Grand Tour's first studio day. pic.twitter.com/W3BmxlnsdP
— Jeremy Clarkson (@JeremyClarkson) July 17, 2016
September 24, 2016 – The £3.6M Opening Sequence is filmed in the California desert
The boys and crew were now getting into the rhythm of hopping around the world as their tapings went back home to Whitby, Rotterdam, Lapland, and Stuggart.
There have been a ton of interviews, which we hope you have seen covered here on Grand Tour Nation and we now have less than a few hours until the show finally premieres.
It’s been a journey that has had a lot of ups and downs for Mr. Clarkson and his mates, but like I’ve always said – You can’t appreciate the highest peaks without experiencing the lowest valleys.
Congratulations and welcome back, boys!