The world’s biggest motoring entertainment show, Top Gear, returns to BBC America with an adventurous “Top Gear” Nepal Special followed by all-new episodes and fans can’t wait! In the Nepal special, host Paddy McGuinness, Freddie Flintoff and Chris Harris set out on a high-altitude voyage from Kathmandu to the Forbidden City of Lo Manthang, through the highest mountains, deepest gorges, and harshest terrain. It is an adventure you have to see to believe!
This season, expect to see bungee jumping in a car, an epic race between a fighter jet and the latest McLaren hypercar, a spectacular road trip through Peru and more mischief as the hosts travel the globe in pursuit of hijinks and motoring mayhem.
We had the opportunity to catch up with “Top Gear” host Paddy McGuinness prior to the upcoming premiere and he shared some fun details about the upcoming season, plans for the future of “Top Gear” and more!
KRISTYN CLARKE: There were so many exciting moments on this season of “Top Gear”! I was on the edge of my seat the entire time I was watching, especially the Nepal special. What are you most excited for viewers to see, as you all had quite a few adventures this season?
PADDY MCGUINNESS: Have you see the bungee jump, yet?
That looks fantastic and you get a real sense of how risky that is and the Nepal episode is fantastic as we are on the really dangerous roads and it’s a really exotic location so there’s loads of stuff to look forward to really!
Absolutely! Those roads in Nepal were like nothing I have ever seen before! What was the scariest part of that for you?
Yeah, I think it’s interesting because you go to these sorts of places where the traffic restrictions and everything else is totally different and you end up on these roads and if you knew what the roads were going to be like when you were going there you’d probably never drive them! There is something about when you are there and you are in the zone and you are driving away and you just get through it …even now when we watch that Nepal episode back we were like ‘Jesus! Why did we drive those roads?’ … it’s crazy, but we did it and hopefully, people enjoy it!
Of course! I’m thinking about my own little car traveling those roadways and thinking ‘oh, hell no!’ (laughs)
I wouldn’t recommend it (laughs)! But it was fun at the time!
What was one of the biggest thrills for you during the new season? I know you had a bit of an accident, correct?
Yeah, again, I don’t know … it’s just when you are in that situation no matter what’s thrown at you, you have to just get on with it because there’s no other way out really! Like those roads, you were talking about when you are halfway up there you start thinking to yourself or panicking saying I don’t want to do this anymore, but you are stuck and you can’t go back, you have to go forward and if you don’t go back or forward there’s only one other option and that’s down and you really don’t want to do that! So you just sort of forge ahead really! The dangerous side of things with whatever happens … you just blank it out.
I can imagine! Obviously skill is of great importance for you guys as drivers, as well as, dealing with a camera crew. Can you talk about that?
Well, when we got the job what you do is … we all sort of have a lot of experience driving anyhow… but I think most people think ‘oh, I’m a good driver’ so you get in those situations and you find out quickly you’re not that good! They sent us on a lot of driving courses, such as courses on how to handle cars when they spin-out, you know, everything you can think of and every situation you can think of but even with all that training there is nothing that can prepare you for when you are actually doing something. No matter what training we did it was nothing like Nepal and those roads and you just have to do it when you are there and learn on the job.
Can you talk a bit about the appeal of “Top Gear” as we know the speed and the thrills continue to attract viewers, but the chemistry between you, Chris, and Freddie play a big role as well!
What’s nice for me is when people will stop me on the street and say I was never really a car person but I now watch “Top Gear” and that really means a lot because you’ve got this new generation of people who wouldn’t think about watching “Top Gear” because they might not be that interested in cars but they quickly learn while watching the show that it’s not just purely about car reviews all the time. You can watch that stuff on YouTube, as there are millions of people doing car reviews …there’s a bit more to it and “Top Gear” just adds that extra bit of flavor to it and takes you to places you’d never normally see, puts you in situations you’d never normally find yourself in!
Definitely! I am certainly not a car enthusiast but I found myself hooked on each and every episode! I kept asking myself ‘what are they going to do next?’ and there are plenty of things I’ve never seen done with vehicles!
You’re not on your own with that thinking, as I’ve thought that myself …’ what are they doing next?’ (laughs) …’ what the hell do they have us doing now!’ so we are in the same boat!
Is there anything on the show that you haven’t tried yet or would like to attempt?
It’s been done on “Top Gear” in the past, but for us three we’ve not really done anything in the States yet, so I’d love to do something over there. I love Americana and I love the sort of vibe over there and I’d love to just see a bit more of the country to counter what you see on TV and in films and stuff. I’d like to really get off the beaten track a bit and see what’s out there.
That would be amazing! Chris [Harris] relayed the same sentiments when I spoke with him the other day saying that there are so many different types of roads and terrain to explore here in the States.
Yes, Yes! Once this horrendous bloody virus passes hopefully we’ll get out there!
What are some other projects and ideas that you are currently working on right now?
At the moment we’re just in the middle of the new season and because of COVID-19 we are obviously doing a lot of stuff in the UK which is kind of doable for us because you’re in the car on your own and you are already social distancing and we have little remote-controlled cameras in there so we don’t come into contact with each other which with Chris and Freddie is fantastic ..I’m pleased about that, the less I have to be near and interact with them the better (laughs)! It’s great, as when you live somewhere you get used to it and you don’t really see a lot of it, so now we are actually getting out and seeing more of the UK and it’s been lovely. It’s been great to explore more of your own country!
Do you have a dream car that you haven’t driven yet?
It’s not so much a dream as in I love it, but I think for the sheer price of it would be a Bugatti Chiron. I’d like to experience driving one just to see what you’re paying for as you are looking at a 4.2 to 5 million pound car. I want to know what this is going to give me for that kind of money and what you get, so I’ve not driven one yet but I keep pestering the producers so hopefully, I’ll get to do it soon!
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