Belfast Telegraph

Chris Evans quits Top Gear: 'Gave it my best shot - but sometimes that's not enough'

Top Gear host Chris Evans has announced he is stepping down from presenting the show after one series.

The new incarnation of the show, with Chris Evans and Matt LeBlanc at the helm, debuted to 4.4 million viewers on May 29 but saw ratings plummet as the series continued.

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The show has failed to reach the viewing figures of the last series with Jeremy Clarkson, Richard Hammond and James May.

Sunday's finale of the rebooted first series, which featured Hollywood actor Patrick Dempsey, drew an average of 1.9 million people and an 8.7% share of the available viewing audience.

Making the announcement on Twitter Evans said: "Stepping down from Top Gear. Gave it my best shot but sometimes that's not enough. The team are beyond brilliant, I wish them all the best."

In a statement he said: "I have never worked with a more committed and driven team than the team I have worked with over the last 12 months. I feel like my standing aside is the single best thing I can now do to help the cause.

"I remain a huge fan of the show, always have been, always will be. I will continue to focus on my radio show and the allied events that it encompasses."

Mark Linsey, director of BBC Studio's, said: "Chris is stepping down from his duties on Top Gear. He says he gave it his best shot doing everything he could to make the show a success.

"He firmly believes that the right people remain, on both the production team and presenting team, to take the show forward and make it the hit we want it to be."

The new presenting team joined after the old team left following a fracas between lead presenter Clarkson and a producer over hot food.

Clarkson, Hammond and May will debut their new motoring show The Grand Tour for Amazon Prime in the autumn.


From Belfast Telegraph