Wednesday, May 31, 2023

Top Gear filming halted following presenter’s serious injury

Filming of the hugely popular BBC car show “Top Gear” has been suspended following a crash during filming in December 2022 that left co-presenter Andrew “Freddie” Flintoff with serious injuries, the broadcaster announced on Thursday.

The BBC has now completed its investigation into the incident and has decided to halt filming of the current series.

“We have sincerely apologized to Freddie and will continue to support him with his recovery. Under the circumstances, we feel it would be inappropriate to resume making series 34 of Top Gear at this time,” BBC Studios said in a statement.

It is not clear when or if filming will resume, and the broadcaster has said it will make a decision later this year. “We understand this will be disappointing for fans, but it is the right thing to do, and we’ll make a judgement about how best to continue later this year,” the statement added.

The BBC also confirmed that it will carry out a health and safety review of “Top Gear“, which has been one of its most successful programmes since it was revived in 2002, following a 1977-2001 eponymous BBC motoring programme.

Andrew Flintoff, a former England cricketer who became a “Top Gear” host in 2019, was said to be “lucky to be alive” following the accident at the show’s test track in Surrey, southern England. The Times newspaper has reported, citing insiders, that Flintoff is quitting as the show’s co-presenter. He hosted the show alongside Paddy McGuinness and Chris Harris.

Flintoff is revered by England cricket fans for his heroics in the 2005 Ashes series against Australia, a career highlight that earned him cult status. After retiring from cricket, he had one professional bout as a boxer in 2012.

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