The BBC has confirmed that Chris Evans will host Top Gear when it restarts next year, replacing Jeremy Clarkson. You can read our analysis here.
Inevitably, the entire world is having its say on the matter. For his part, Evans told Topgear.com: “I’m thrilled, Top Gear is my favourite programme of all time. Created by a host of brilliant minds who love cars and understand how to make the massively complicated come across as fun, devil-may-care and effortless. When in fact, of course, it’s anything but and that’s the genius of Top Gear’s global success. I promise I will do everything I possibly can to respect what has gone on before and take the show forward.”
Controller of BBC Two and BBC Four, Kim Shillinglaw, said: “I’m so delighted that Chris will be presenting the next series of Top Gear. His knowledge of and passion for cars is well known, and combining with his sheer inventiveness and cheeky unpredictability he is the perfect choice to take our much-loved show into the future.”
After the announcement, Evans tweeted: “First tweet as new Top Gear host. I would like to say Jeremy, Richard & James are the greatest. And NO I’m not leaving the R2 Breakfast Show.”
James May, who will not be returning to Top Gear, tweeted: “Well best of luck to @achrisevans and future of Top Gear (b. 1977). That’s a ballsy call, frankly, and to be admired.”
Other former presenters had their say. Tiff Needell tweeted: “Never been so popular for radio interviews! @achrisevans was only real option to create a new Top Gear and reckon it will be very different.”
Noel Edmunds, who presented Top Gear in the Eighties, was enthusiastic: “The brilliant @achrisevans for #TopGear Fantastic! Then with May, Hamster & @JeremyClarkson on another channel, car fans get double fun!”
Quentin Wilson sounded a note of caution: “@achrisevans Top Gear’s reinvention now depends on who presents with Chris. Definitely no smiley celebs who know nothing about cars please.”
British Touring Car racer Jason Plato, a good friend of Evans who appeared on TFI Friday last week, tweeted: “@achrisevans mega stuff pal! Big shoes but you defo have the feet.”
Perry McCarthy, the original Stig, said: “I am really pleased to hear Chris Evans will lead Top Gear. The guy ticks all the boxes: popular, creative and passionate about cars. He has big shoes to fill but I believe he is the perfect choice to carry the show forward.”
Inevitably, certain sections of the internet lit up with negativity from Top Gear ‘fans’. I won’t bore you with their whinging as much of it is pretty nasty. But safe to say there are a lot of people desperately clinging onto hope that the BBC will reverse their decision on Clarkson and will hate whoever replaces him regardless to how well suited to the job they are. To those people – if any of them are reading – I say get over it. Clarkson, Hammond and May will be back soon, probably on Netflix. And if you don’t like the new-look Top Gear when it returns, don’t watch it.
Regardless, the reactions seems to be mostly positive. Top Gear needed to change post-Clarkson and the vast majority of people acknowledge that Evans is the best man to lead it.
By Only Motors