You are using an older browser version. Please use a supported version for the best MSN experience.

Evans a bit peaky in Top Gear race

Press AssociationPress Association 28/05/2016 Kerri-Ann Roper

Co-host Chris Evans admits he was scared while filming a segment for the new Top Gear that involved racing to the highest pub in South Africa.

The popular motoring show returns to UK screens on Sunday boasting a new presenting line-up including Friends star Matt LeBlanc and four others, including German racing driver Sabine Schmitz, plus The Stig.

The new series of the BBC Two show has been filmed over four continents in nine countries.

"We ended up on this nine mile pass, that goes three thousand metres (above sea level) ... that was scary, there was nothing, it was a loose gravel road and we were going as fast as we could and it was getting dark because we were late filming," Evans said.

The segment sees the team - joined by singer Tinie Tempah, Seasick Steve and Texas's Sharleen Spiteri - putting the latest SUVs from Porsche, Jaguar and Mercedes-Benz through their paces with the aim of getting to the pub to headline a gig.

The former TFI Friday presenter dubbed his co-host, LeBlanc, Mr Top Gear, saying: "He is built for this program, literally."

His "wing man" was absent from the global launch of the show earlier in the week but LeBlanc sent a video message saying: "I've had an amazing and crazy few months since joining Top Gear. We've accomplished a lot and I'm extremely proud of it."

The duo has been plagued by reports they are at loggerheads but LeBlanc recently dismissed the reports, calling them bullshit.

When the series airs, viewers will see the newly-launched Star In A Rallycross Car, which replaces the show's old Star In A Reasonably Priced Car segment.

It features a new car and new track, as well as seeing two celebrities going head to head. The first guests are the Social Network star Jesse Eisenberg and chef Gordon Ramsay.

Evans explained changes to the new format using a soccer analogy.

He said: "It's like taking over a football club and saying we're going to get rid of the goals... we're going to get rid of the ball and we might change the grass.

"That's what people come for, so you keep all that stuff and if something is getting a bit tired you dispense with that but the fact the studio is slightly different, the fact the presenting team is slightly different, is enough in a way, that's a massive change."

The new set has raised viewing platforms on either side, a balcony, and a new viewing wall. Evans also revealed interview segments would be shorter.

"Andy Wilman, who used to make the show, used to say they make it for a nine-year-old. That's a great philosophy because kids get bored really quickly. But that doesn't mean they have a short attention span if it's interesting, so you've got to make it interesting and things have to move. So we have this rule that you've got to move it in 15 seconds."

image beaconimage beaconimage beacon