Top Gear (2002–…): Season 24, Episode 5 - Episode #24.5 - full transcript

Matt LeBlanc is the first to test America's explosive new supercar, the Ford GT. Presenters Chris Harris and Sabine Schmitz go head to head in one of motorsport's toughest events - a buggy race across the wild Californian desert.




And welcome to Top Gear.

Tonight we've got Chris Harris
and Sabine Schmitz

in a motorsports
fight to the death.

And we've got Eddie Jordan
in a surprisingly tight
race suit.

-Something for everyone.

But first,

I wanna talk about
American stereotypes.

Because some people
will tell you that America
doesn't do supercars.

And I have to say
that is completely
and totally...

True, actually.

Over the years,
America's made
a lot of fast cars,

Corvettes, Mustangs, Vipers,

but we've always
tended to leave

the mid-engine supercar thing
to the Europeans.

Well, watch out, Europe,
because America's
coming to getcha.

MATT: This is the new Ford GT.

Yes, it's American.

Yes, it's a car.

And yes, it's super.

And for starters,
it looks great.

In fact,
I think it's the best looking
American car this century.

Hell, it might just be
the best looking car
this century.

Not only does it
look like a proper supercar,

the GT is made out of
proper supercar parts.

This isn't some lump of iron
forged by a blacksmith,
no, no.

This is the real deal.

It's got sophisticated pushrod
hydraulic suspension.

A whip-crack
double-clutch gearbox.

So practically,
the whole thing

is made out of carbon fibre
and aluminum.

That's right, aluminum.

It's an American car
and we're in America,

so it's aluminum.

And all those
cutting-edge components

are needed to
manage 647 horsepower.

That is major league.

Major league enough
to do zero to 60
in three seconds flat.

That's as quick
as the Ferrari 488.

That's as quick as
the McLaren 675LT.

That's as quick as...

Well, that's quick.

So it's got
supercar acceleration.

But those cars both top out
at 205 miles per hour,

which is really fast.

The Ford GT however...
216 miles an hour.

It's the fastest Ford ever.

Now that kind of firepower
demands closer inspection.


And that means no more
Pacific Coast Highway.

Matt, where are you going?

What's that? I can't hear you,
I'm going through a tunnel.


No, the Ford GT
needs a racetrack.

my favourite racetrack,
Laguna Seca.

All right.

Let's see what it can do.

So we put it in track mode.

Oh, that's nice.
Drops down with authority.

All right, ready? Here we go.


the acceleration is enormous!


Now Ford have done some
clever stuff with software
and fuel injection,

which they say
eliminates turbo lag.

They keep the turbo spooled up
even when my foot
is off the throttle,

so there's always power.


And there's
plenty of grip, too.

It's got an active wing
out the back that keeps
the back stuck to the track.

And it's got active flaps
under the nose to keep
the nose stuck to the track.

You stick all that together,
and this thing is...


Okay, here we come
into the corkscrew...
Ooh... [BLEEP] That's quick.


If you were to do that
through the corkscrew

at that speed in
any other Ford ever,

you would be out
there in the weeds.

And that's
the thing about this new GT.

It's not like any
other Ford, ever.

See, here's what happens
when a big company like Ford

tries to do a supercar.

The designers come up
with a gorgeous,
sleek concept.

The engineers try to
figure out a way to make it
go really, really fast.

And then
the departments get involved.

There's the guy from
the cup holders department

who wants to make sure
there's room for his
thirty-ounce big slurp.

Then there's the guy
from the sports and leisure
luggage department,

who wants to make sure
there's room for
his golf sticks.

And then there's the guy from
the making-sure-fat-guys-fit

Who wants to make sure
there's room for his fat guy.

Now after all their demands
have been met,

you don't have
a supercar any more.

No, no, no,
what you have is an SUV.

But the GT feels like
it's been crafted
by specialists

who knew exactly
what they wanted.

And got it.

Now this is
hydraulic steering,
no fancy electric.

It's old school.

It's got a great feel.
Turns in really sharp.


Ferrari give you
a lot of software
to help you do neater skids.

But there's none of that here.

This one, you're on your own.


All on your own.


Oh, my God,
the balance is epic.


America can't do supercars?

Not from where I'm sitting.

So come on,
what's not to like?

Well, there is that motor.

Yeah, it's big on power,

but by supercar standards,
it's kind of short
on cylinders.

This is a V6.

A 3.5 litre EcoBoost V6,
to be exact.

And that could be a problem.

Because this car
is inspired by the GT40,

the greatest American race car
of all time.

Powered by one of the most
iconic V8s ever.

Created in the 1960s,

its aim was to end
Ferrari's domination
at the 24 Hours of Le Mans.

Up against Ferrari's
highly strung V12s,

Ford used the reliable brawn
of a seven-litre V8.

It worked.

The GT40 didn't just become

the first American car
to win at Le Mans,

it went one, two, three,
and locked out the podium.

Ferrari were humiliated.

They'd never win
Le Mans again.

Now listen to the Internet,
and the Internet will tell you

that Ford ditching
the V8 in the new GT
isn't just misguided,

it's unpatriotic.

But the original GT40
didn't have a V8
because it was American,

it had a V8 because it was
the right tool for the job.

And so is this new V6.

Yeah, sure, Ford could've
stuck a V8 in here,

but that would've made
the car heavier, bigger,
less aerodynamic, less agile.

It's just got such a balance,
feels so well sorted,

-it's just...

You've got to
bring it off the track.

I still have
half a tank of fuel.

Bunch of...


As I was saying,

the new GT doesn't
honour its history
by being retro.

It honours its history
by being quick.

Last year,
exactly half a century
after the original GT40

spanked Ferrari at Le Mans,

this new GT won its class
in the 24-hour race

and beat Ferrari again.

What are you gonna do?

This car is so special.

Maybe it's the history.

Maybe it's the pedigree.


You know what?
I'm just gonna shut up now.

I'm just...



Pretty special.

-Pretty special, right?

This car looks
absolutely stunning
in that film,

but I can't believe
I'm saying this,

it looks even better
in the studio in the flesh.

The way you see
those scalloped sides.

MATT: Yeah, yeah, yeah.

Yeah, when we did the film,
I'd seen photos of it,

but when I got to
see it in person
the first time,

I just walked
around and around,
and around and around it.

It is so good looking.

It's a great piece of styling.

And you were the first person
outside the factory
to drive it.

Er, right, yeah.

Yeah, well, apart from the guy
who backed it off the truck

-on the Pacific Coast Highway.

-He was technically,
the first,

but then, it was,
er, then it was little ol' me.

Erm, I'm profoundly jealous.

I love driving cars first,

You've taken over my role,
I'm gutted.

Whoa, whoa, whoa, hold on,
you get to drive everything.

You drove the Ferrari FXXK,
you drove the Bugatti Chiron.

You drove the Volvo Estate
in Kazakhstan.

Come on now,
you need to learn to share.

You can't have 'em all.

In this instance,
I can say that's fine.

But one thing,
you didn't mention the price.

Ah, no, I didn't.

it's very expensive.

It's about $400,000,
about £300,000.

That's a lot of money, yeah.

Erm, that's more than a 675LT,
more than a Ferrari 488.

-Enough to support this

rather ordinary badge here?

Yeah, I mean,
it's a better supercar.

So because
it's more expensive,
it's better?

Yeah. Yeah.

-Yeah. I mean,
look, for too long now,

America's been making cars
that are good value
for the money.

You know, they give you
a lot of bang for your buck.

Okay, but that's where
we've been going wrong.

Supercars aren't about
bang for your buck.

You make it stupid expensive
and people just
can't get enough of it.

-There's some logic in that.

Can I ask one thing,
you know when
you did the lowering?

Oh, when you put it
in track mode
and it goes boom.

Yeah. Please,
can I, erm... Come on.

All right, go on, have a go.
Here you go.


-Watch this, this is great.
-You would, wouldn't you?

-You would.

Watch this.

This is the coolest thing.





-That is just awesome.

And wait for it,
watch it go back up.



That's fantastic.

CHRIS: How do you get out?


Right. All right,
while he figures
that out, Rory!

And really,
it doesn't actually matter
how much the Ford GT costs,

because they're
only planning to make
a thousand of them

and they're sold out
ten times over.

-That's right, unlucky.

All right. Now...

It's time to welcome
this week's guest.

That's right.

He's won six
Olympic gold medals,

he's one of
the fastest men ever
on two wheels

and his legs make more torque
than a Ferrari F12.

Please welcome Sir Chris Hoy.



How are you doing, mate?

Hello, Matt, how's it going?
Thank you.

-Rory, thank you. Thank you.
-Have a seat right here.

this is exciting, isn't it?

That is a nice...
That is a nice welcome, yeah.

Fantastic. Great to be here.

So, over 500 pound-feet
of torque in those legs, huh?

Erm, 700 newton-metres,

-whatever that is,
in the old...
-That's a lot.

It's quite a lot. Less now.
I'm retired now.

-It's like a vintage car
loses power

-over the years, you know.

So maybe human figures
by this point, do you think?

it's been a while
since I've tested them,

-but who knows...
-And you love your cars.

What did you
drive down here in today?

-I drove down
in an RS6 Estate.
-RORY: Nice.

-Nice family car.
-MATT: Yeah.

Quite sensible, but...

I hear it's been breathed on
just a little.

Little bit, little bit.
It's got a loud exhaust

and maybe a little few...

A few extra horses
in there, but it's...

It has 730 horsepower, dude.

Yeah, well,
you need them, don't you?
You need them.


Now last year
you did something
I've always wanted to do.

You raced at
the 24 Hours of Le Mans.

Oh, it was unbelievable.

Just incredible,
an amazing experience.

Erm, it exceeded
everything on every level

that I was looking forward to
getting into it,

and yeah, huge amount of fun.

Now, a couple of years ago,

you drove a Nissan GT-R

at the Goodwood
Festival of Speed, didn't you?


How did that go?
Oh, you know what,
we have a clip.

I knew you were
gonna bring this up.

Let's take a look
at this tape here, yeah.


MATT: Oh, nice.

There we go.




Yeah, thanks for reminding me
about that one. Yeah.

-I love the bow
at the end, like...
-Well, you know.

I sat in the car afterwards
and I just thought

I wonder if I wait here
long enough they might
all just go home, you know.

Oh, horrendous.

There's a corner
called Molecomb,
it's a left hander,

and they all told me
before I got there
if you can see the corner,

or if you wait to brake

before you see the corner,
it's too late.

And I remember going over
the crest of the hill,

seeing the corner, still flat,

-and I thought, "Uh-oh".
-MATT: Yeah.

-And, er, yeah.
-You were committed,

It was full commitment,
you know, at least
I wasn't holding back,

but, erm, the worst thing was,

or not the worst thing,

but one of the bad things was

it was the CEO Andy Palmer's
personal car,

one of only two Nismo GT-Rs
in the country, brand new,

he hadn't even driven it yet,

-and, er...
-Nor would he ever.

Oh... Well, exactly,
and I saw him,
after I got out of the car

and he was very good about it,

he said,
"Look, we can replace cars,
we can't replace people."

Erm, and he was quite happy

'cause it showed
how great the air bags
and the safety was.

You know, I went through
four rows of hay bales

and came out unscathed.

So you've raced at Le Mans.
What's next?

Er, I'm aiming to
be the first person
to cycle across Antarctica,

and also cycle
to the South Pole
on the way to doing that.

So it's something
I never thought I'd do,

it's completely out there,
quite a strange challenge,

but it's a huge challenge,

and to be
the first person to do that
would be pretty cool.


That killed the conversation,
didn't it?


No, no. I'm just, er, no...
I think that's, erm...

-Why would you do that?
-Why would I do... Well...


It's... Do you know what?

It's not one of these places
you go to on holiday,

you're not gonna end up
in the South Pole by accident.

So I kind of...

I like to do things
that challenge me,
that push me,

and to go somewhere
that I never thought

I would ever get
the chance to do,
or to go to,

erm, and to just
to challenge myself in a way

that I've never
been challenged before.

But yeah, it's just...
"Why not", I suppose,
is the answer.

Is that something
you're gonna do
by yourself or...

No, we're trying to find
somebody stupid enough
to do it with me.

[LAUGHS] Good luck!

So we're kind of chatting
to a few people just now

and it's a big undertaking,

it's gonna be a lot
of training for it,
a lot of preparation.

We're going out to
Iceland soon to...

To test a new bike
and we're going to
actually design

and build a new bike
for this project.

Gonna have to be
able to deal with minus

whatever the temperature's
gonna be out there.

it's 25 degrees cooler
at the South Pole

than it is in Iceland,

which is pretty cold already,
so, yeah.

Whoa. Have you put
like a cab around it,
and a motor...

-[LAUGHTER] it a truck.

I'd go with you,
but I got a thing I gotta do.

I couldn't...

Right, what do you say
we take a look

at your training lap
with Chris Harris?

-How did that go out there?

It was... Well, I'm gonna get
my excuses in early, I think.

It was greasy, it was wet...

Erm, Chris was
very good though, he wasn't...

He wasn't shouting at me,
he wasn't grumpy.

But you're a lot
bigger than him.

Now I assume what
you're aiming for
is to knock Max Whitlock

off the top of
the leader board, right?

Gold versus gold.

For the pride of my sport
versus gymnastics,

it'd be great to be up there.

Yeah, yeah, yeah,
you're a sport
that has wheels.


Yeah, he's got some advantage.

I mean,
he'll be way smaller than me,
he's lighter,

he takes good instruction
from his coaches,

he can learn routines,
so he should be good.

-Oh, okay.
-And it's a good lap he set.

That was very modest.
Is that how you really feel?


Right, let's take a look.

-Forget everything else.

-There are two words
that matter today.

-Max and Whitlock.

We have to beat him.

but he did it in the dry.

Oh, God,
you are a real racing driver,
all the excuses.

Let's go, first gear.


-Over to the right-hand side.
-Get in, you bugger.

-There's several others
in there.


Oh, he's showboating now!
Over to the right.

Braking hard at the 100.

-Oh, 100.
-Third gear.

-Third gear.
What the hell is that?


Bit of, er,
bit of pommel horse
work there.


Oh, that is just... [SNIFFLES]

That is just beautiful.



Third gear.
Get it in third. Here we go.

Oh, that's fifth gear.
Max didn't do that.

-[STAMMERS] Oh, come on!

-Come on!
-Fourth gear.

Yeah, just trail it
all the way in and
get the thing tippy toed.

-Carry it more through...
-Yeah, yeah.

Good car control that, man.

-Over the line.

We're in, star pupil.
Star pupil.

That was a bit better,
that one, I think.

So you've told me
everything you know, then,

all the local knowledge.

I'm all ready to go.

Yeah, of course I have,
I told you all my tricks.




MATT: That looked really good.
RORY: Proper car control.

And in those conditions,
with no distractions,


Yeah, I just about locked up
on the brakes

and went straight into him,

-so he was lucky
I didn't hit him...
-Yeah. [LAUGHS]

Could have been messy.

Yeah, it could have been...
Could have been messy.

Yeah, Chris,
what do you think?

Very, very high hopes.

I think he's the star pupil,
as I said in the car.

He's got all the car control.

If the conditions are there,
I'm expecting great things.

-No pressure.
-[LAUGHING] Thanks, mate.

All right, well,
we'll get to your timed lap

a little bit later
in the show.

Okay, now, moving on.

For the last few months,

there's been an argument
brewing in the office.

Who is Top Gear's
quickest driver?

Well, obviously,
that's The Stig.

But who's second quickest?

Well, according to racing
driver Sabine Schmitz,
it's Sabine Schmitz.

And according to racing driver
Chris Harris,
it's Chris Harris.

So, we decided to
settle the argument
once and for all,

Sabine versus Chris.

All we needed
was a place to race.


CHRIS: The Mojave Desert.

Once a year, this Californian
wilderness is transformed
into a sprawling city

of die-hard race fans.

This is what I call
a proper playground.

-Oh. Look at the size of it.

CHRIS: To decide
which of us is quickest,

apart from The Stig,

we'd been sent
to the King of the Hammers.

One of the most extreme
off-road events on the planet.

Competing here requires
specialist skill.

High speed,
low-grip racing
across desert flats,

meets complex, technical
rock crawls over near-vertical
bolder strewn faces.

Where one mistake
can mean disaster.

Well, all I can say is,
what a perfect place
for you to lose.

What? I'm not gonna lose.

Come on.

CHRIS: Welcome to Hammertown.

Thirty-five thousand fans,

all gathered to
watch the motorsports
equivalent of cage fighting.

And as if that wasn't
intimidating enough,

the next morning, we'd been
entered into something
called the Legends Class.

And we'd be driving these.

That is an Ultra4 Buggy.

Holy moly.

Over $100,000 of custom-made
500 horsepower V8 off-roader,

with four-wheel drive,
long travel shocks,

and 40-inch tyres.

One slight issue here, Sabine.

-This is your vehicle.

There are big dents
in the roll cage.
And if I just, erm...

Yeah, this vehicle's
been on its roof
several times, Sabine.

But that's standard, isn't it?

-I'm not afraid.
-For you, maybe. Not for me.

I've never rolled
a racing car in my life.

I rolled a couple.

Are you not worried by this?

I can't wait, actually.

Don't cry, Harris, please.

It's just so cool. Huh?

CHRIS: Not convinced,

I went to find
some reassurance
from the event organiser.

So, Dave, you are literally
King of the Hammers.

-Evidently, yeah.
-This is your event.

This is my event, yeah.

The million dollar question
for me is the inversion thing.

Yeah, I heard you
haven't rolled before.


-Today's your day.

This is going into
something knowing
that you're going to get hurt.

I'm not really sure
about this at all.
This is absolutely insane.

DAVE: This car right here,

neither one of these guys
finished his race last year,

because they broke their backs
in the middle of the race,

and had to be flown out.

Just drive as slow as you can.

-Then you're safe.
-You listening to
what he's saying?

-Then you're safe.
-He just said
they broke their backs.

Given what you know
about our
driving background...

-Give an honest assessment

of our chances
in these things.

She's gonna kill it.
You're not gonna make it.


Anybody that can drive
a van around Nurburgring

is willing to try
different things.

Plus, I've heard she's already
been upside down,

and you're worried about that.

So you're gonna drive scared
and you'll be
upside down anyway.

She's gonna kill it.


CHRIS: With Dave having been
no help whatsoever,

we were given the afternoon

and a veteran driver each

to familiarise ourselves
with the cars and the terrain.

I had been paired
with former
X-Games gold medallist

and legendary
motivational speaker,
Chris Ridgeway.

You're pretty much
gonna be okay.


While Dave had
kindly offered Sabine
the help of his son, Bailey.

Ready for this
crazy adventure?


I'm in a little bit
better shape than Chris.

CHRIS: So first up
were the desert flats.

Sounds straightforward.


Bloody hell.


That's insane.

And I'm supposed
to do this myself, am I?

CHRIS: In my defence,
I've never been
a good passenger.

But annoyingly,
Sabine was having a blast.






-Having a good time?


CHRIS: Soon though,
it was our turn
to take the wheel.

Oh, now we're talking.

Now this isn't
like a street car
that you're used to driving.

You gotta hammer the thing.

You're hard on the brakes,
hard on the throttle.

BAILEY: Full throttle.

-Give it some gas.
-Okay, honey.

Give it some gas.
There you go.


The suspension is incredible.

But there is
this lurking feeling
it could roll at any time.

That's correct.

CHRIS: Just as I was starting
to get the hang of it, though,

I asked a stupid question.

Now, how many
injuries have you had?

I've had a few.

I'd start with the easy stuff
like the broken arms and legs.

But, er, rebuilt wrist
and knees and ankles.

There was that one time
I got my leg cut off.


Yeah, that was
a bad day at the office.

Oh, my godfather.

CHRIS: And with that,
we made our way
back to Hammertown.

Where my confidence
took another blow.

I'm kind of up
for anything to do
with going fast in cars,

but I'm not
so sure about this.

I've just been
rag-dolled around
by some lunatic.

And now I'm told
that this happened yesterday
to some poor soul.

Electrical fire.

He used the phrase
"We barely got out".

I thought that was plastic.

That's aluminium, melted.

Erm... I think I've bitten off
more than I can chew here.

It was clear we
needed more practise.

But before we
could head back out,

we were told
we'd each be getting
some help from a team manager.

I can't have Eddie, I can't.

-I don't want Eddie.
I don't want Eddie.

I don't, I don't want Eddie.

-Ah! Hi!

-Welcome to the desert.
-Eddie. [LAUGHS]

What a lovely surprise.

-Gentlemen, gentlemen.
-That was such a...

-Sabine, how are you?

Nice to see you.

-Okay, so...
-So I must be with...

We've had a coin toss.

-You are with Eddie.

-[GASPS] Whoo-hoo!
-And I am with Sabine.

-Come on, give me a hug.

-EDDIE: Give me a hug.

-Are we gonna win?
-CHRIS: Yes, we're gonna win.

-He's nervous, isn't he?
-Guys, here we go.

-Along here, this is our line.
-Oh, that's fine, that's fine.

That's it. That's the line
in the sand, right there.

Okay. Toes on the line.

They are the enemy.

Okay, I've got you, Edward,
I've got you.

-You sure?

-So it's on?
-It's on, it's on.

SABINE: What a mentor.

CHRIS: So, heading back out
to our desert training area,

it was time to tackle
rock crawling.

And with our team managers
now on board, they got
straight down to business.

You know what
I have a good feeling about?

I'm gonna blank Matt LeBlanc.


I'm not gonna speak to him.

I'm just gonna eyeball him
and I'm just
gonna stare into him.

MATT: Stare into me?

That's creepy.

Anyway, I had plans of my own.

I think we need to try

to get in Chris Harris' head
a little bit.


Need to try to ask him,
are you sure
you're gonna be okay?

You sure
you're gonna be all right?

Because his confidence
is easy to shatter.

MATT: Okay?

CHRIS: Actually,
it wasn't my confidence
they needed to worry about.


We got bloody stuck.

What on earth
have they got themselves into?

They're properly stuck.

MATT: Stuck?

No, no, no,
this is Sabine Schmitz
we're talking about.


Hold tight!



-MATT: Well, well, well.

How was that?

EDDIE: Did you enjoy your time
in the mountains, then?

A little bit.

Was there a problem
with the car?

Well, we went
the difficult way.

You went the easy way, I saw.

No, we retraced
exactly the same route
as yours.

-I don't think you did.
-It was exactly... It's route.

-It's not route, it's route.
-Tell 'em they went
a different way.

Sure they were.
They are the king
of the practice.

We are the king of the race.

Let's have a beer.
I'm bloody thirsty.

Let's go have a beer, good.

-All right, nice job.
hanging around in the rocks.

Way to go right around
that hard section.

Drive slowly and safe.

-I'm feeling good now.
-I'm done with them.

-I'm done with them.
-We've done enough today.

I thought you
were gonna ignore him
and not talk to him.

-You said...

You just spent 10 minutes
talking to him.


MATT: With our day's practise
drawing to a close,

we headed back to Hammertown

and joined
the thousands of fans
settling down for the night.

And with the next day's race
looming even larger,

Chris was
a little preoccupied.

There are actually,
at least eight other locals
in our race tomorrow.

And I'm looking at the runners
and riders here,
they're a bit good.

I think we're fighting over
penultimate and last.

MATT: You look like
your confidence
is a bit shattered.

You know, they airlifted
four guys outta here today.

Was it four or five?
Was it five?

Look, I know what
you're trying to do.

No, what am I trying to do?
I'm just, I care about you.

I want you to know that,
what you're getting into.

What do you mean
they airlifted
people out from here?

Big wrecks.

I mean, full on... [WHISTLES]
Cartwheel wrecks, bad stuff.


Now when you were
managing F1 teams,

was there any, like,
motivational speeches
before the race,

the night before,
anything you told them to do?

The drivers
would be sent to bed

at the latest, 10:00.

But prior to that,
they'd all have a massage.


-SABINE: Massage?

What type of?


Well, I dunno,
that's between
Eddie and Chris.


If that's what he needs
to do for his driver,

that's what
he does for his driver.

That's got
nothing to do with us.



All right.

Now, we'll see
the second half of that film

a little later on in the show.

And Chris, you ever done
any off-road driving?

Nothing like that.

I did drive a Dakar rally car
a few years ago in Morocco,

that was pretty cool.

But I drove
Colin McCrae's 1995 replica...

-MATT: Oh... championship
winning car

back in... About three or four
years ago, on the final stage

where he won
his world title in Wales,
in the GB Rally,

and that was amazing.

He's a massive, massive hero
of mine, so that was
a privilege to do that.

All right, guys,
have a look at this.

In the studio,
we've got a brand new car

that's gonna compete
in a brand new race series

that's gonna make F1
look like the Stone Age.

Seven hundred horsepower,
all carbon fibre,

and the best thing of all,
it was designed

by the same guy who did
the Tronlight cycles.

Wow, that is really
cool looking, right?


Just one tiny, tiny question.

Where does the driver sit?

No, there is no driver.

This is robo-car.
It's a self-racing racer.

Basically in
a couple of years,

twenty of these things
will be hooning
around a track,

competing against each other,
robot versus robot.

How cool is that?

I genuinely don't
understand it, Rory.

So we're supposed to get
excited about one robot
racing another robot.

It's robots having a race.

What do you not
understand about that?

-Think how fast they'll be.
-There's something

fundamental missing, dude.
The driver.

-MATT: Yeah.

We got to watch motor racing
to see gladiators
controlling machines

going wheel to wheel,

not to watch one
processor having a go
at another bloke called Intel.

-Yeah, there's no...
-It just doesn't...

It's utterly meaningless.
It's a great looking thing

and I'm sure it's fast...

-What do you reckon?
-Yeah, I have to agree.

-Sorry, Rory.
-All right.

The thing is
I love innovation,
new technology,

but it's about
the human element.

You have to care
about the person
that's driving it.

You know what you could do.

[LAUGHS] You could put
some jockeys on it.

-You know what I mean?

Now you're talking!

Yeah, you could put them...
Maybe some foot pegs
back here,

a couple of clip-ons here,
get on the thing like this.


Right, and off they go.


And then the last one
on the car wins.

You could be
the first one to try it.

You know what,
I'm good, I'm good.

So over the last few weeks

I've been serving up
a whole bunch of
amazing electric cars...

-...and Matt and Chris

keep batting
them down because...

Well, they fear progress.

But there's a new Nissan
that I think could
change their minds

and earlier today I went out
to meet it on our track.

This is the Nissan BladeGlider
and it's an electric
concept car.

But here's the difference.
This one actually drives fast.

And it's got three seats.

So it's the perfect way
to convert a couple of
electric car sceptics.

What is, er, what is this?

Gentlemen, behold the future.

-What do you think?
-What is it?

Well, it's the BladeGlider.

It actually drifts. It's got
a built in drift mode.

It's made for skidding.

-That's very exciting,

but it looks like you get
a grant with NHS for it,

but other than that...
So you say it drifts?

Wanna have a go?

I think we should drive it.

At least,
it might be drier inside.
Oh, there's no roof.

No, there's...
[CHUCKLES] There's no roof.

-Now I've got your interest.
-You have.

If it drifts, of course,
I'm driving, Rory, not you.

-Sorry about that.
-All right, get in.

Here we go.

How the hell
do you shut the door?

-Is there a button?

RORY: There you go.
CHRIS: Oh, yeah.



-What's the horsepower?
-Two hundred and sixty odd?

Two hundred and sixty-four
horses, gentlemen.

Top speed of at least
115 miles per hour.

That's impressive.
For a garbage truck.

-For a sports car,
maybe not so much.

Where's the accelerator?
There we go.

Wow, that feels pretty frisky
from the driver's seat, guys.

It just feels like it's ready
to drift, doesn't it?

Rory, you might be
persuading me

about the validity
of electric cars, here.


RORY: Yes!


He loves it! He loves it!

I think
he's having a good time.




That's not bad.

For me,
it's a philosophical point.

It's fun. I don't care about
all the cleverness.

Someone's just gone,
let's make it fun.

There you go. There you go.

It is fun.

All right,
chuck it in here fast.





What do you call
an electric doughnut?

That's the name
of my new band.


So what do we think, a winner?

Er, yeah, I think so. Chris?

Thumbs up from me, definitely.

Yeah, I like it.

All right,
one more lap before we go?


-Can I drive?

-What does this say,

traction control off, good,
right, let's go. Ha-ha.


MATT: Really?
It was pretty fun.

RORY: There you go.
MATT: I think it was
pretty fun.

-RORY: Electric car.
-Oh, come on.

Yeah. Yeah.

I know I convinced
you guys in the end,

but Chris, I mean,
what's your feeling
on electric cars?

electric cars in general,

I thought the whole point is
it's about being eco-friendly

and about being green
and sensible and that...

-That looked like
a lot of fun.

I mean that was... You...

You could convert me
potentially in that.

-All right.
-I was so convinced.

Honestly, I...
I... I don't really buy into
so much of it,

but the fun message,

that thing reeked of fun,
it was wonderful.

-We were smiling,
all three of us.
-CHRIS: Yeah, it was great.

The looks,
I think the jury's still out
on the looks of the thing,

-And the doors.

-Yeah, and the doors.
-And the roof.

Yeah, and roof.

A door that you can't reach
to close once you get in
is difficult.


All right.
Now, I think it's time to see

how you did in your timed lap
around the track.

But before we do,

after you'd finished your time
in the car with Chris,

you went out
and had one more go
on your own, didn't you?

-I did, yes.
-What happened?

Well, you know,
I just like to
think that I was...

I was pushing,
trying to find
the limits of the car,

the track,
the grip, finding out where,

how far I could push it,

and I essentially,
just touched the outside kerb

on the follow-through
just enough,

so it started to lose it

and thought I'd caught it,
but yeah, didn't.

We have it on tape.
You wanna see it?

Oh, have you?
I thought you might, yeah.

-Let's take a look at that.


HOY: Oh, oh, oh, oh...

-Couple of points here, erm...

First of all,
well done for not dying.

MATT: Yeah, yeah, that's good.

-Next, the way I see this.

Michael Schumacher's
race weekends
always started off

with him pushing
too far, didn't it?

Always go too far,
find the limits

before you actually
get into
the competitive aspect.

-There we go.
-That's what you were doing.

That's it.

You were getting rid of
all of those negative urges,

getting all the bad stuff
out of the way ready for
a perfect performance.

It's like auto mechanics.

You tighten the bolt
till it snaps, and you
back off a quarter turn.


But you did manage
to eventually
complete a lap, yeah?

-I got a lap in.
-Was it terrible?

Yeah, well,
it wasn't a perfect lap.

-Are you ready?
-I'm ready.

-Let's do it.

who wants to see his lap?


MATT: Here we go.

CHRIS: Okay, off the line.

Bit of clutch riding,
but I think
that was a good start.

This is the one,
this is the one!

CHRIS: Bit of
self-encouragement, as well.

Oh, yes,
getting the car rotated
under brakes, that was fast.

-Third gear through there?
-HOY: Yeah, yeah.

CHRIS: Using all the track
and a little bit more too.
That's good.

Messy, messy.

a little bit of tail wagging,
but that's fast.

Over stopping the car,
second through Chicago.

I love the way you
put the wipers on

to make us think it's raining
when it wasn't raining.

That was good gamesmanship.
I like that.

Now flat out,
down the back straight,

braking between the 150,
probably closer to the 50,

triggering those
hazard warning lights,
this line looks good to me.

Did you let the car roll out?

You didn't open the steering
as much as I thought.

Too much over steer.

You found grip on the inside,
didn't you?

-Yeah, yeah.
-So you'd been thinking there,

that was definitely clever.

Down the back straight.

There's a cameraman,
try not to hit him.

CHRIS: Good idea.

So now this turn point,
that's... That is rapid.


Now back
through the tyre wall.

You're not lacking
in the trouser
department there.

Okay, last two corners.
Be brave!


CHRIS: That's mega.

I mean,
triggering those lights
which shows maximum braking.

But now, over the line
and a bit of grass and a yump.



So that...


-Thank you.
-Dead impressive.

Oh, thanks, man.

-CHRIS: That is...
-That looked quick.

That was quick.

That's the most committed
I've seen around here.

Oh absolute...
By far, yeah, yeah, yeah.

And the conditions
weren't perfect.

They were drier than your...

What windscreen wiper
activity suggested.

Come on. Come on.

I suppose,
looking at it there,
I'm wondering,

where could you
have gone quicker?

I mean it looked like
you were maxed out everywhere.

I was pushing it,
but I made mistakes on,

I think, the first
left-hander, could have been
a bit tighter there.


Erm, and I could have used
more width of the track

going through
that right-hander,
the follow-through.


But if you go too far,
you touch the painted kerb

-and you see what happened.

MATT: Yeah, yeah, yeah.

I think that's a really,
really impressive effort.

Hopes are high.

Yeah, okay,
this is a big moment.

-I'm excited.
-Me, too.

Top of our leader board
is still Max Whitlock,

the super gymnast
with the 1.39.5.

Well, his double lay in,

half in half out has this
almost mournful quality to it.


that's besides the point.

He has two gold medals.

You have six gold medals.

So on paper, you should be
three times faster than him.


-Is that true?
-I'm twice his weight though.

That doesn't matter.
All right, we ready?

Let's do it.

Sir Chris Hoy, you did it...


-This is my favourite part.

-In one minute...



-Point four!


-Wow, that's good.

Thanks for that,
thank you very much.

Thanks very much, cheers.

That is mega.

Thanks so much. Cheers!

Thank you.

-Thank you, mate.
-RORY: Mate, you were amazing.

Really good.

Right to the top, man,
that was good.
There you go.

Thank you very much,
that was awesome. Thank you.
I didn't think that at all.

-All the best, thank you.
-Ladies and gentlemen,
Sir Chris Hoy!

-HOY: Thank you very much.


That will not be
beaten for some time.

-No, that was...
-That will not be
beaten for some time.

That was driving
the wheels off it,
as they say.

now it's time to head back
to King of the Hammers.

Earlier, we saw Sabine and
Chris training for their big

off-road showdown aided
by my words of encouragement,

and Eddie's
deep tissue massage.


But things were
about to get serious.

Really serious.

MATT: Race day at
King of the Hammers.

Sabine and Chris
would soon be competing
in an off-road race

to claim the coveted title
ofTop Gear's fastest driver,

apart from The Stig.

But after some
overenthusiastic practise
the day before...

Oh, the left, left!

-Come on.

I don't think it liked that.

MATT: Team Jordan had issues.

What have you done here?

What have I done?
The vehicle has
let itself down.

Are you joking me?

This was brand new,
running perfectly.

You don't turn left
when I tell you to turn left.

You break the machine.

You're a car wrecker.

How did anyone
ever drive for you?

Very easy.

They didn't do
silly things like this.

Years ago,
I would've said to the driver,

you are a complete dick.

CHRIS: I'm supposed
to have a positive
mental vibe from you.

You're beating me up.

Course I'm beating you up,
because I don't
want the same again.

-I need you to believe.

-Find that commitment...
-I like Eddie.

He's so cool.'re gonna win.
Just feel the vibe.

Feel the good vibes
inside you.

Don't talk to me.
Don't talk to me.

I am not talking to him.

He's not a nice man.

-He's trying to...
-He looks concerned.

-He's trying to do your head.
-You look a little concerned.

Well, at the moment,
I don't have a vehicle
to go in the race, do I?

Yes, we have this, look.
It's magic.

This is the car. Look at this.

MATT: Ooh,
it's got a Texas flag on it.

Get outta here.

I love it when you act like
you don't like me.

-It's great.
-I hate you.

You don't hate me.

I like Sabine.

You are a scumbag.

-A scumbag?
he's not a scumbag.

-You're trying to
damage my man's head.
-Scumbag? Hold on.

SABINE: It's damaged already.

-You're a scumbag.

Old people are funny.

But with the atmosphere heavy
with pre-race tension,

it was soon time
for our drivers to make
their way to the track.

If you could call it that.

The race would start
on the choppy desert floor,

with Eddie and I keeping watch
from a high vantage point.

Here, our drivers
would battle the dust

to reach the unforgiving
rock face beyond.

After a brutal
uphill scramble,

a perilous ledge,
ending in a do-or-die descent

and a chance to
get the hammer down
back on the flats.

Negotiating another
short boulder pass,

a fast sequence of banked
turns and flat-out jumps
completes the lap.

And they'd be doing
all of that eight times.

So before the race
was due to begin,

we headed out with our drivers
to offer some encouragement.

At the toughest stage of all.
The rock wall.

Towering over
two hundred feet above us.

[OVER COMMS] Oh, my Jesus.

I mean, what the[BLEEP].

So the part that's tricky here
is if you were
right behind someone,

you just gotta single file up.

And I guess
you could maybe try
that side on the right.

SABINE: Oh, God.
MATT: To pass someone.

But what do you do
when you get to this?

You just gotta check up
and go single file, right?


So I'll just do it.

Unlike the previous day's
boulder crawl,

during the race,

these loose rock scrambles
would have to be
attacked at speed.


MATT: And on near-vertical
faces, rolling the car
was a very real danger.

But at least Sabine
was in full control.


The steering wheel came off.



SABINE: Oh, man!


I don't want to have
the steering wheel come off.

CHRIS: What have we got
ourselves into, here?

Top man.

Nice and neat.

You're okay.

MATT: Having reached
the top of
the rock wall though,

it was still the small matter
of getting back down.

This is mental.




MATT: Quickly learning that
this was a race about bravery
as much as speed...

-Can we go back now?

MATT: ...we decided
we had offered our drivers
enough encouragement

and headed back to the pits.

I'm glad that
I'm not in the car with you
for the race.

Oh, this is crazy.

MATT: And after some
final tweaks to the cars,

we said our last goodbyes
to Sabine and Chris.

Well, not our last goodbyes,
but you know what I mean.

It was time for them
to take their places

out of the way
at the back of the grid.

Because in this
Legends Class race,

they were pitted against
some of the best talent
in Hammer history.

All hardened veterans
at an event

where simply finishing
is an achievement.

From the sports'
fastest female, to mavericks,
and seasoned warriors.

So really,
this was a race within a race.

Schmitz versus Harris.

-Ooh! [GROANS]
-MATT: Serious business.

-It's crazy.
-EDDIE: You can't
believe this, can you?

Okay, we're getting close.

You stay focused
and you stay out
of the roost, okay?


EDDIE: Usual thing,
just jump
the start if you can.

Make sure you
put the guy beside you
into the wall.

The rest
follows on from there.

SABINE: Okay, Harris?

I am on a mission
and I just wanna beat you.

All I can ever
think about on the grid

is the fact that I wish
I'd had another wee.

MATT: The desert
would wait no longer.

Eight laps of
off-road endurance.

Let the battle commence.

MAN: Three, two, one, go!


Ah, what a start.

so much[BLEEP] in my face!

Look at my man! Go on, Chris!

I don't see anything!

You're okay, Sabine,
keep going, keep going,
I know the dust is bad.

Just think about it
as the Nurburgring
in the Stone Ages.


CHRIS: Despite the dust,
we were both off to
a promising start.

But that rock wall
was looming.


Rocks being thrown in my face.

Can't see where I'm going.

This is horrendous.

But somehow, we weren't just
in a two-car race at the back.

There's Chris in fourth place.

Go on, Chris, go on, my son!

No, we were right in the mix.


Oh, I hit someone.

-Where's Sabine?

Oh, look at that.

Come on, Chris!

MATT: At the top of the wall,
they were up with the pros.

Which should've given them
some real confidence.

Oh, my God,
what am I doing this for?

SABINE: This is crazy.

Oh, my God, just let it go.
Let it go, man, let it go!

CHRIS: Back down
on the desert floor,
Sabine was on my tail.

And as we tore through
the rest of the course...

SABINE: Whoo-hoo!

...we saw what Hammer racing
was really all about.

Come on!

Off-road open warfare.

Let's see where my man is.

-He's in third.

Go on, Chris.

Survival of the fittest.

Oh, my heavens.
That was close.

But as the laps piled on...

Come on,
Sabine, push, push, push!

...they weren't just battling
the other racers...

No, you're not coming past me,
you American!

These rocks are really crazy.

I need to turn right.

MATT: The course was
fighting back, too.

-Oh, hang on a second.

She's stuck.

A little bit,
just reverse
just a little bit.

Not much, maybe five feet.

Snared by the rocks
on the worst part
of the course,

Sabine was
losing precious time.

All right, now turn the wheels
all the way to
the right and go forward.

And the rest of the pack
were getting away.

All right,
try to go slow backwards,
straight back slow.

Back a little bit more,
little bit more.

You might have to just
come off that ledge.

One wrong instruction from me
and she could roll.

All right, stop right there
and turn the wheels

the other way and go forward,
to the right.

There you go.

Atta girl! Yeah!

Good girl!

You're a star! You're a star!
All right. That's okay.

SABINE: That's okay?

she lost a lot of time there.

Back up and running,
to hunt down Chris,

Sabine would need to wring out

all 500 horsepower
from her 6.4 litre V8.

Keep your pace,
keep your pace.

SABINE: Holy crow!


MATT: As she tried
to reel him back in,

Chris, already on his
second car of the event,

was now in trouble again.

Have a gearbox issue, I think.

I can't get into second.

Never mind the second gear,
you're doing brilliant.

Keep going.

Oh, well, I got
a transmission issue now.

MATT: Despite
Eddie's encouragement,

losing gears at this stage
was a serious issue.

EDDIE: Beautiful, beautiful,
power, power, power, power.

And entering the final stages
of the race,

Sabine was pushing hard
to hunt down Chris.

Chris, keep that power going.

This is so strong.

Just make sure
you look after the car.

MATT: But with Chris' car
still just about
holding together,

Hammer racing
claimed another victim.

SABINE: Oh, my car!
MATT: Oh, her car's smoking.

We've got smoke
coming out of the back.

EDDIE: Car's on fire.

CHRIS: That looks like
some bad smoke
coming out of Sabine's car.

MATT: So near the finish,
Sabine was determined
to keep going.

But with the smoke only
getting worse, as team manager
I had no choice.

All right, Sabine,
pull off, pull off,
pull off to the left.

Stop, stop, stop.

Way off the circuit.

Get outta the car.

You're in a safe spot
to get out, just get out.

Just get out.


She all right?

Yeah, she's out, she's okay.


CHRIS: With Sabine safe
but out of the race...

The big trick is now
to finish.

CHRIS: claim the title
of fastest driver,

I had just half a lap to go.

All I could do was
hold on and hope.

Oh, my lord.

My legs are knackered.

My arms are knackered.

I've got a mouthful of rocks.

And I've got one gear.

Oh, that nearly went over.

EDDIE: Come on,
more power, more power.

CHRIS: This had been
one of the toughest races
of my life.

Bashed up...



Oh, blimey.



EDDIE: Last corner.

CHRIS: And finally...

EDDIE: You beauty!

You beauty!

CHRIS: ...over.

I can safely say

I'm not sure
if I could do that again.


congratulations to Chris.

He finished fourth overall.

Amazing performance.

And with that,
I am delighted to award you

the prize for Top Gear's
fastest driver,
apart from The Stig.


Erm, I'm not sure I can...
I'm not sure I can
accept that, Rory.

Of course you can accept it,
you earned it.

-You won.
-EDDIE: You're a winner.

I'll take the award,
but the trophy
is absolutely horrid.

-Is it a pigeon?

Eddie, how did
that event compare
to what you've seen in F1?

Terrifying. Absolutely,
I had no idea what I was
letting myself in for.

It was horrific.

Formula One, poles apart.

-Don't even compare the two.

That's right,
yeah, they were quite,
quite different.

But between
the dust and the boulders
and the transmission problems

and the, well, the fire,

I'm not sure that
that's the best way
to determine who was fastest.

I'm really glad
that we decided to do
best two out of three.

I'm sorry?


We decided it was
best of three? When?

-Yes, I did. Yeah.

Yeah, yeah, yeah,
I mean, you're up

for another challenge,
right, Sabine, huh?

Different, different cars,
different course?

Yeah. Bring it on.

I need a car what's,
what's well prepared,

which doesn't break down.

And I take that little trophy
from that little racing driver
over there.


SABINE: That's mine!

Chris? Harris?

Do you accept that challenge?

It would be
a pleasure to beat you
on another continent.

Maybe this continent
is named Nurburgring?


Let's, er, let's, let's see...
Er, that's worrying.

Er, let's...
let's see what happens there.

Sounds like it's on. Okay.

On next week's show,
a very green,
very noisy Mercedes.

Er, and a revolutionary
road trip across Cuba.

-See you then.