A series of epic ‘Grudge Matches’ will provide fans with some memorable edge-of-the-seat entertainment as cars compete head-to-head during this month’s four-day Top Gear Live extravaganza at the NEC, Birmingham (25-28 October).
The Grudge Match action forms an integral part of the thrilling Track Performance, one of three major attractions at Top Gear Live. It is staged alongside the Arena Show – basically a live version of Top Gear hosted by Jeremy Clarkson, Richard Hammond and James May but with the added excitement of stunts and special effects plus an interactive Exhibition featuring a host of familiar props from the Top Gear studio.
Grudge Matches will kick off with a duel between former F1 driver Tiff Needell and the legendary Stig, Top Gear’s tame racing driver. When the dust settles, Needell will join fellow TV motoring show presenter Vicki Butler-Henderson to co-host the on-going show which will feature a host of regular BBC Top Gear favourites and an impressive line-up of A-list stars all driving the ‘Reasonably Priced Car’.
After the dramatic opening shoot-out a series of other Grudges Matches will follow. The cream of the world’s latest generation of hot hatchbacks will be pitched into battles –competing pocket rockets include the new Vauxhall Astra VXR, Ford Focus ST, VW Golf GTI 35, RenaultSport Megane 265 Cup; Škoda Fabia vRS and the Citroën DS3 Racing. As television viewers will know, the Citroën is a confirmed Top Gear champion and was whizzed around the Monte Carlo Grand Prix track by Jeremy Clarkson.
The crowd pleasing Japspeed Drift Team returns for another of these Grudge Matches with former Boyzone star Shane Lynch taking on the newly crowned British Drift Champion Paul Smith. A mouth-watering selection of rally cars will be recreating many of the sport’s Grudge Matches from the 1990s, an era when British champions Colin McRae and Richard Burns ruled the world. Flame-spitting turbo cars confirmed include Escort Cosworths, Subaru Legacies and Imprezas, Toyota Corollas and Lancia Integrales.
“Last year we introduced a longer indoor track to allow us to brew up some faster and more dramatic action. Now we’ve made the track slightly wider so, for the very first time, we can set up these side-by-side Grudge Matches,” explained Jim Wiseman, Top Gear Live Track Producer. “The Stig will set the scene taking on Tiff – not a man who likes to be beaten – and what follows will be every bit as spectacular with lots more massive reputations at stake.”
Other highlights of the Track Performance are power laps by The Stig in supercars, a special half-car race plus an elimination race between a grid of two-third scale NASCAR racers where the last car across the finishing line the at the end of every lap is knocked out until there’s only one winner left standing.
“The elimination cycle races during the Omnium at the Olympics were a real hit and now we’re going to generate the same kind of fun and games, only this time with cars,” continued Wiseman. “Adding to the frenzy, all the cars will be painted in special liveries to rev up support among the crowds. We’re not saying exactly what these colours will be just yet but the idea is to get everyone involved and cheering for their own particular favourite.”
All tickets give access to the three elements of Top Gear Live and full details can be found on the official topgearlive.co.uk website. Adult prices start from just £49* with a ‘Kids Go Free’ promotion available for accompanied children (aged between 5 and 15 years old) on Thursday and Friday and special ‘Family Tickets’ available for both Saturday and Sunday. Tickets can be booked from the website or by calling 0871 230 5588 – fans are advised to book in advance as certain tickets for selected shows are already sold-out.
* Booking fee applies, calls cost 10p per minute plus network extras
The Stig will line up in one of many epic Grudge Matches at this month’s Top Gear Live.
For more information/media accreditation:
For further information on this year’s show please contact Jonathan Gill, Shaynee Taylor or Deborah Tee in the Top Gear Live UK media office at MPA Creative on 01372 414120 or via email on: email@example.com. A wide selection of copyright-free show photography is also available on request. For press accreditation to Top Gear Live, please visit the dedicated press section on topgearlive.co.uk.
Top Gear Live
Offering a variation on more traditional motor shows Top Gear Live brings the spirit of the TV programme to the live events arena allowing fans to immerse themselves in their passion for Top Gear and motoring in general. Starring Jeremy Clarkson, James May, Richard Hammond and The Stig the event features a combined indoor track and arena plus an exhibition. Top Gear Livehas been running world tours since 2008 entertaining over one million visitors. Note: the format of the event and presenter line-up can vary in different countries.
Top Gear Live runs from 25-28 October 2012 at NEC Birmingham. Tickets are on sale and prices start at just £49*. For more information about the show or to book tickets visit topgearlive.co.uk or call 0871 230 5588
Top Gear Live is a joint venture between BBC Worldwide and Brand Events Ltd, who are running the event in the UK jointly with Clarion Events Ltd.
BBC Worldwide Ltd.
BBC Worldwide Limited is the main commercial arm and a wholly owned subsidiary of the British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC). The company exists to exploit the value of the BBC’s assets for the benefit of the licence fee payer and invest in public service programming in return for rights. The company has five core businesses: Channels, Content & Production, Sales & Distribution, Consumer Products and Global Brands. In 2011/12, BBC Worldwide generated headline profits of £155 million on headline sales of £1085 million and returned £216 million to the BBC. For more detailed performance information please see our Annual Review website:
Brand Events UK
Brand Events was formed in 1999 and is the UK’s most successful innovator in events and exhibitions. Since then it has launched some of the UK’s most popular consumer events including Top Gear Live, The Outdoors and Vitality shows and more recently the Taste Festivals series of events.
Clarion Events Ltd.
Clarion Events organises more than 150 exhibitions, conferences and seated events annually across the globe, and is the largest consumer event organiser in Europe. It operates in a wide range of markets including Art, Baby, Entertainment, Motoring, Retail and Travel. In excess of 700,000 people attend its events each year.