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A collection facts about the popular show.
1. The programme was first launched in 1977 and ran until 2001, when it was taken off air due to low viewing figures. The series was re-launched in 2002 and has become one of the most viewed T.V programmes in the world, with an average 380 million viewers worldwide.
2. The original Top Gear, was first televised in 1977 from the Pebble Mill studios in Birmingham. it was originally a half hour long, standard car review programme, which showed test drives, pricing and performance reviews of the days popular cars.
3. During 2002 the show re-launched with a new hour-long show format and the original host, Jeremy Clarkson, was subsequently joined by two other co-presenters. Many new segments appeared in this show including "Star in a reasonably priced car".
4. There were actually two Top Gears- the original renamed Fifth Gear, and the new format Top Gear in BBC featuring Jeremy Clarkson, Richard Hammond and James May.
5. Actually in the first season of remade Top Gear in 2002, Jason Dawe was the original third presenter. However in the second season, he was replaced by James May.
6. The show has also been replicated in several other countries, using the same format with three presenters, in the U.S, Australia and Russia.
7. There have been 3 Stigs to date. The first was Perry McCarthy who wore all black and is known as The Black Stig. He appeared on the first 22 episodes of the re - launch in 2002. The second Stig was Ben Collins, who is known as the original White Stig. He appeared on the show from 2003 until 2010. He was sacked from the programme in 2010 for revealing his identity in his autobiography.
8. A rarity on TV shows, the entire studio audience stands for the 60-minute duration of the show, as no seating is provided.
9. For the reasonably priced car originally they were going to use a Hyundai, but Hyundai refused to help Top Gear out - prompting the first episode of the show to be advertised as "containing no Hyundais".
10. The location of it's test track is Dunsfold Aerodrome in Surrey, a former Canadian, W.W.II air base. The test track is 1.72 miles long ( 2.82 km ). The test track's corners are called, Gambon ( after actor Michael Gambon), Crooner, Wilson, Bacharach, Bentley, Chicago and Hammerhead. The test track was originally designed for Top Gear by Lotus Cars.
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