After a long whittling process, BBC Worldwide has taken a list of thousands of hopefuls for Top Gear Australia down to the three lucky blokes who now own the title of "happiest hoons in Australia." The three presenters, Charlie Cox, Warren Brown, and Steve Pazzati along with an AUS version of Stiggie will be starring in the first episodes beginning later this year. The Beeb is of course hoping the eclectic trio will maintain the spirit of the original, while adding their own down under spin on things. We fully expect to see multi-way ute shootouts ending in something being catapulted from a land train. All while chomping down on a Vegemite sandwich. Full presser after the break.
TOP GEAR AUSTRALIA — HOSTS REVEALED After an Australia-wide call out, 4,000 DVD applications and months of interviews and screen tests, SBS and Freehand are pleased to announce the hosts for Top Gear Australia - Charlie Cox, Warren Brown, Steve Pizzati and of course, The Stig.
Charlie Cox was a broadcast journalist with a number of Sydney radio stations before moving to England to continue his career in radio and to race cars. After winning a number of British titles and surviving a spectacular crash, Charlie turned his talents to presenting and commentating motorsport on the BBC.
Charlie is known for his colourful commentary and currently commentates and presents the Moto GP for the BBC. He is also director of six media companies in the UK and Australia including DMG Radio.
Warren Brown is an award winning cartoonist and regular motoring columnist with The Daily Telegraph. The outgoing adventurer has a passion for history and motoring and combining his two passions he came up with the idea to retrace the 1907 raid from Peking to Paris in 100 year-old cars. Warren has his own small collection of historic cars which include two 1920s fire engines, a WWII jeep, a 1925 Bean motor car and an armoured vehicle. He plays the five string banjo and ukulele and dreams of being James Bond.
Steve Pizzati is the youngest member of the cast and calls himself a 'gun for hire'. Steve is an advanced driving instructor and race driver for Porsche Australia and is part of the International Audi driver training team in Melbourne. He freelances as a motoring journalist and photography stunt driver, is a self confessed science geek and was on track to become a jet pilot but was knocked back in the final round due to poor eyesight. His love of fast machines continues.
And The Stig. About him, we'll say no more.
SBS Director of Content, Matt Campbell said, "Nailing down a cast of 3 from 4000 applicants was no mean feat but we are very happy with the outcome. We have chosen three totally different and entertaining personalities who have a natural chemistry that works! We thank all the applicants from around Australia for baring their souls in the audition process and we're confident our audience will like the end result."
Top Gear Australia is the first of a global roll out of the BBC Worldwide franchise and Adam Waddell, Managing Director of Top Gear for BBC Worldwide says:
"A show like Top Gear doesn't resonate with a huge global audience just because people love cars. The world's most entertaining car show's popularity owes much to the relationship between its three presenters. In Charlie, Warren and Steve, Top Gear Australia now has its own team - three guys who possess the spirit of Top Gear whilst having their own distinct personalities. We wish them every success with the new show - they are going to have a great time making it."
The three motoring larrikins and The Stig's Aussie cousin will present Top Gear Australia on SBS in late 2008. [Source: BBC] (Thanks Tim)