Full BBC Top Gear Team Announced

If you’ve been anxiously awaiting the reboot of BBC’s Top Gear after former oft-politically incorrect host Jeremy Clarkson’s much-publicized “fracas” with a producer got him canned and the remainder of the 2015 season cancelled, E3 Spark Plugs has good news for you. The show returns to TV sets across the pond, and here in the US for those with access to international programming, in May with an all-new team of hosts and drivers.

In late January, producers announced that actor Matt LeBlanc of Friends fame (he played the sexy but not-too-bright Italian Joey Tribbiani on the NBC show that ran for 10 seasons) will join the cast alongside longtime British broadcast personality Chris Evans. Now, we’ve got news of the remainder of the new season’s cast. They are:

  • Eddie Jordan: Irish former racing driver, team owner and entrepreneur inducted into the Irish Motorsport Hall of Fame in 2012 and more recently awarded an honorary OBE (formally known a Most Excellent Order of the British Empire award) by Her Majesty The Queen in recognition of his motor racing career and charitable efforts.
  • Sabine Schmitz: German racer, team owner and the first woman to win the prestigious Nurburgring 24 hours in 1996 (a feat she handily repeated the next year). She earned bragging rights as the “world’s fastest taxi driver” when she drove a few lucky passengers around the track at mind-blowing speeds in a BMW M5.
  • Chris Harris: A racing journalist who began his career at UK-based Autocar magazine as their official road-test editor. He’s best known, however, for his wildly popular YouTube channel, Chris Harris on Cars, launched in 2014 and since racing up more than 250,000 subscribers and 20 million views. He’s also a member of the Pistonheads.com crew and a regular on YouTube’s DRIVE channel.
  • Rory Reid: An award-winning journalist who launched CNET UK’s Car Tech channel, had a starring role on Sky 1’s Gadget Geeks series and former presenter on YouTube’s Fast, Furious & Funny channel. He’s also editor-in-chief of Recombu, specializing in automotive reviews.

"We really do have a bit of everything for everyone,” Evans says of the new lineup. “A fellow lifelong petrolhead from the other side of the pond in Matt; a fearless speed-demon in the irrepressible and effervescent Sabine; the encyclopedic, funny and wonderfully colourful character that is EJ; Chris, one of the world's top no-nonsense car reviewers; and Rory, who simply blew me away in his audition and fully deserves his place on the team. 

The show returns to British airwaves on May 8. No word yet on a US Top Gear debut, but we here at E3 Spark Plugs will keep you updated.

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