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Sacked Stig slams BBC 'hypocrisy'

The man sacked from his role as The Stig on Top Gear has accused the BBC of hypocrisy after he claimed they were the ones who first blew his identity.

Ben Collins revealed he began working on his memoir when he feared his stint as the anonymous driver was on the skids.

Breaking his silence after a BBC legal bid to block the book failed, he told The Sun that the court battle was "ridiculous".

The BBC tried to prevent publication of his autobiography, claiming it had a confidential arrangement with the 35-year-old driver.

Collins told the paper that the corporation "wanted to bully me out of contention".

He said: "It is a travesty that a state-funded broadcaster gagged my free speech. It was hypocritical to suggest I'd done any more to reveal myself than they had."

He said an arm of the BBC had been responsible for putting his name in the public arena two years ago in a feature speculating about The Stig's identity in the Radio Times, which is published by BBC Worldwide.

He said his name was published as one of the potential candidates which led to him being recognised.

"I was astonished. I was being outed by the very people I worked for. Yet I knew nothing about it," he said.

Collins said he had made every effort to hide his identity, keeping covered up at all times and eating on his own away from the crew during filming.

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