|Sydney 8th February, 2009 – What is it about a Pom talking down an expensive sports car – in particular, a German sports car – that we find so amusing ? I don’t know ! But one thing’s for sure, Aussie audiences lapped it up enough to fill the Acer Arena’s circa 8,000 capacity venue for a full, four consecutive days (10 shows end to end = almost 80,000). There were mixed opinions however, with some not quite connecting to the STIG vs Apache 3D Chopper sequence and others claiming too many light effects and burn-outs. However, the majority crowd called it BRILLIANT !
The truth is that the 18yr old high-octane TV show translated very well into Top Gear Live, which lived up to it’s pre-show hype. With a large array of horsepower SuperCars and some of the world’s most precise stunt drivers – and being on the floor a few feet from the action, I’m glad those drivers were precise – the show provided entertainment for an hour and a half that included the typical crazy stunts and humor we’ve come to expect from the TV show.
Joining `Hamster’ Richard Hammond and `Jezza’ Jeremy Clarkson, was the token Aussie, Steve Pizzati from Top Gear Australia. Copping a fair bit at the hands (or mouth) of Clarkson, Steve was supposedly a good sport taking punishment well for failing in one of the stunts; that’s apparently the Top Gear way and Pizzati proved that he could give as well as he took … well, that’s the Aussie way !
A regular segment from the TV show is of course ` The Lap’, where celebrities take a timed test around a circuit in a small vehicle. Translated to the Live show, this segment saw the audience participate in a clever way using Red and Green signs to turn the car Left and Right, whilst the louder they cheered, the faster the car would go. End result, after 10 shows, the 5pm session (2nd last) scored the top of the totem pole with a 1:31.15 score.
Speaking of audience interaction, the same Red and Green signs were used to rate some of the world’s best SuperCars as either Cool or Un-Cool – although Clarkson admitted to holding an over-ride button at his discretion should he feel it necessary ! And he did !
Probably MOST amazing and exciting though, was the ` Car Soccer ‘ ! This involved 3 Hyundai I30W’s per side, in an England vs Australia contest that saw a final score of 6 – 5 to England. It was however, an incredible display of precision driving, with an emphasis on the word PRECISION !
In some cases cars stopped only millimeters from impact and it was amazing that the first show went right to the end of the game with only a minor clip to one car. It was also impressive to see both Hammond and Pizzati keep their own cars un-damaged – I never knew either could actually drive !
Of course advertisements are a standard part of any show, of course they appear on the TV version, so of course they made a translation to LIVE as well.
Shell V-Power was stunning in communicating the power of their fuel by having a miniature F1 racer come out of the belly of a Van at the fueling station, whilst NAVMAN used a familiar song to save a relationship, and our own contribution assisted Hyundai in unveiling their Small Car of the Year – the I30W … 10 Times !
Audiences loved being involved and the interaction with great showmen, which all three were. And they most certainly enjoyed the colour, choreography and prestige that was one of the greatest SuperCar shows we’ve ever seen live !
Next Hop; New Zealand !
– Our own Hyundai I30W
World Tour Dates:
Top Gear Live World Tour
The Top Gear Live tour is set to visit a selection of Top Gear loving cities across the world.
Auckland – CLICK HERE FOR TICKETS NOW!ASB Showgrounds- 12–15 Feb 2009
Hong Kong – CLICK HERE FOR TICKETS NOW!
Ticket on-sale dates for the remaining shows will be announced shortly. Keep your eyes peeled for details.