Automotive enthusiasts are still mourning the loss of their favorite television show, Top Gear, and it’s clear their heroes Messrs. Clarkson, Hammond and May won’t be back on the Beeb anytime soon if ever. So are there any shows that those of us with gasoline in our blood can look forward to watching now?
Top Gear’s American version is out of the question. To paraphrase Clarkson, there is a word to describe this show: it begins with ‘s’ and ends with ‘t’ and it isn’t soot. And Jay Leno is even less entertaining in his garage than he was on the Tonight Show.
One show that looks promising is Shut Up And Drive, which airs Sunday, May 3 on Fox Sports 1 at 3:30 PM EDT. The show’s conceit is pretty simple: The two co-hosts, FIA GT Champion Justin Bell and Red Bull Drifting World Champion Rhys Millen, find a fantastic public road, close it to all traffic, and then see who has the skill and stones to get from one end to the other the fastest. In the season debut, the duo take on the spectacular Colorado Highway 141. This twisty and dangerous road follows the Dolores River and features some very steep dropoffs, which makes it a very dramatic setting for this episode.
In addition to driving Highway 141 in one of our favorite sport coupes, the Lexus RC F, Millen and Bell stop off at the Gateway Canyons Resort, where they have some fun in a Baja pro trophy truck on the resort’s private racing course. They also give us an inside look into the resort’s auto museum which has a collection of about 50 classic American cars.
In addition to being incredible driver’s, Bell and Millen have solid chemistry, something that Top Gear had in spades. So maybe, just maybe, this show can fill the void that Mr. Clarkson’s temper created.