Fans of the popular BBC car-based entertainment show Top Gear have complained in their hundreds after the first episode of the new series saw a race across the Sahara desert fail to produce the sort of unlikely, close-fought finish that they are used to.
To show the all terrain capabilities of the new Land Rover one of the famous Top Gear challenges was arranged, with Jeremy Clarkson setting off on an eight hundred mile trip across a stretch of the Sahara desert in the vehicle, and his fellow presenters Richard Hammond and James May attempting to beat him to the finish line on skateboards.
‘When I saw what they were doing I expected to see Clarkson stuck in a sand dune as Hammond and May skated past, giving him a cheerful wave as they went, before Clarkson eventually got his Land Rover out and raced after them to provide a nail-biting finale,’ said Ian Taylor, who is one of a huge number of disappointed fans. ‘When he actually won the race by over a month I was furious. Where were the unlikely accidents to delay Clarkson when he should have been a clear favourite? Where was the entirely avoidable predicament brought on by his ego and boyish sense of adventure? It was rubbish.’
With Clarkson having finished the course in a little under two days he then waited smugly in a five star Egyptian hotel for his fellow presenters to arrive. A bedraggled and exhausted James May was clearly unimpressed when, some thirty three days later, he stumbled into the hotel and found Clarkson waiting in a hot tub with a glass of champagne.
Richard Hammond was unable to complete the challenge having unfortunately succumbed to heat exhaustion and dehydration and passed away two weeks in.