What an event! This is the first time we have been to Top Gear Live. Formally MPH, TopGear have taken over the NEC and ExCeL for in total, 6 days of car madness.
Two of us decided it was time to go and now that all 3 presenters take part in this arena tour, this year was going to be better than ever.
We had paid £99 for platinum tickets each, this gave us a few extra perks over standard tickets, a copy of a TopGear Book, premium seating in the Track show, backstage access to the track paddock and backstage tour after TopGears Live Action Arena show.
The whole thing can easily be made into an all-day affair, with a huge exhibition hall, and two live shows.
The exhibition hall featured various cars from the TopGear challenges such as bikes from the Vietnam episode, a Lexus ‘Rozzers’ Police Car, Richard and James’s Iraq Cars and a few more. There’s a replica of the TopGear News Studio which we think could possibly have had a back drop to make pictures look a little more realistic but never the less, awesomely cool. The cool wall makes an appearance too.
Alongside TopGear stands, there were stands from AutoGlym showing off a Carbon Fibre Koenigsegg, JKs Ferrari Enzo, Mercedes CLK GTR and various other exotic rides.
Another major item at the exhibition was Citroens stand. The DS5 made it’s very first public appearance for all to see and sit in, brilliant.
The first show we saw was the Live Track Action. Having platinum tickets we got to be seated whereas with the normal tickets you had to stand. We managed to get very good seating and had a good view of the track, the start of the drag strip and where the presenters in this case Tiff Needell being the star presenter! Stood and Hosted the show, we wasn’t expecting to see him there!
The Track Action involved Group B Rally Cars, Drifting, star in a reasonably priced car and we were privileged to see Amy Williams our Gold Medallist Olympian! The treat for us though was that we got to see Sabine Schmitz racing a Bowler Nemesis, Lancia Stratos and a Mercedes C63 AMG around the track against various other racers.
Once the Track Action had finished we had the opportunity to go into the paddocks, here we met Sabine Schmitz (got an autograph and picture with her, very proud) and also had a good 10 minute chat with Shane from Boyzone, who is known for his love of cars and we have to say, his drifting was superb! We can only imagine how immense these racers are out on a big scale track. Incredible.
Oh yes, can we never forget, we also got to see the thing that’s banned from Argos and has no knee caps, all we know is, he’s the Stig. Seemingly incredibly Tall and Skinny in real life…is this the same person they use on the show? I guess nobody will ever know!
After rubbing shoulders with some motoring legends, it was now time for the Live Action Arena Show, AKA Jezza, Hammond and May causing havoc…but in real life, in front of you.
Their show can only be described as absolutely fantastic with Cars on fire, Motocross Stunt Riders doing back flips and of course, the 3 gentlemen acting as outrageously funny as ever. This year’s theme was the Olympics, recreating motoring versions of curling, chariot racing and much more, one of the best hours of our lives. You need to go and see the show for yourself.
The £99 each, seemed like a huge amount before we got to the NEC, by the time we finished, it felt like small change. The prices of the various apparel, programs, lanyards, fridge magnets did seem on the pricey side but not any more expensive than other shows etc. Food, toilets everywhere, you were catered for in every way.
We’re going again next year, it’s a no brainer.
10 out of 10!