Top Gear’s Chris Harris on ‘utterly ridiculous’ Florida challenge ‘It’s stupid!’

Top Gear: Paddy, Freddie and Chris star in trailer for new series

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Paddy McGuinness, Freddie Flintoff and Chris Harris have spent the last few Top Gear series staying close to home due to the coronavirus pandemic limiting overseas travel. However, the presenting trio are back with a bang as they set off across Florida in an RV in the first episode of the 32nd series. 

Top Gear sends the hosts to the home of grassroots racing now all three have their racing licenses. 

Paddy, Freddie and Chris go up against the locals in events including donk-car drag racing, a swamp buggy shoot-out and a NASCAR-style showdown. 

Speaking to, Chris shared his thoughts on the “ridiculous” races.

Chris said: “I think Florida delivered on every level because what we wanted was to drive around in our clapped out RV, and it really was clapped out because McGuinness chose it, and have bizarre experiences and to celebrate the wacky world of motorsport, and the way that part of America just gets on and does what it wants to do.”

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“They don’t care about any judgement,” he added.

“Swap racing in isolation is utterly ridiculous. It’s meaningless and it’s just stupid, but they just love it. 

“They have four race meetings a year and they’ll keep doing it until they’re absolutely told they have to stop doing it and they love it and they’re passionate about it.”

“Donk racing was the same, the dirty 30 was the same,” Chris explained. 

“It’s so different to what we do over here and if you go to every state, they’ll have their equivalent of that as well.

“For us, it was the perfect canvas on which to paint the show. It was great fun.”

Paddy praised the Florida locals as he revealed Top Gear has given him the chance to travel. 

He commented: “There was a place called Naples we went to as well which has a big RV community and a lot of people go there to retire but the beaches were amazing just a really nice vibe.

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“Wherever we went we were welcomed and it was nice and friendly.

“But for me, because I wasn’t very well travelled before Top Gear I was just glad to be somewhere filming where there was a TGI Fridays and I knew I can go there for something to eat that I recognise – it was lovely, it was a treat for me.”

Meanwhile, Chris addressed travelling to America for Top Gear following the pandemic. 

He continued: “We really enjoyed celebrating the British Isles for the two years that we’ve gone through lockdown.

“But I think we exhausted the places we can go and we needed a different look and feel so we felt it was great to get away. 

“And Florida is a pretty curious place, most Americans can’t understand Florida. The Florida guy, the Florida man is a thing, isn’t it?”

Later on in the series, the presenters train to become HGV drivers while Freddie gives bob-sleighing a go. 

Top Gear returns to BBC One on Sunday at 8pm.

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