Jeremy turns up heat in V8
JEREMY Clarkson was reduced to a smoking ball of sweat on the Gold Coast this week.
The Top Gear frontman took the wheel of Bathurst champion Craig Lowndes’ racing Commodore and quickly discovered the combined impact of speed and Queensland humidity.
‘‘It’s hard work. I’ll be a puddle of sweat,’’ Clarkson said after his first track laps with Lowndes in the passenger seat of the stripped-out 450-kiloWatt racer.
He was quick to light up a cigarette as he took a break.
Clarkson and James May are in Australia for a Top Gear Live tour and, while preparing for their opening show in Brisbane, hit the Holden Performance Driving Centre, in Norwell, for some fun with Lowndes’ championship-winning Vodafone team.
Clarkson lived a personal dream when he drove the V8 Supercar racer while May, and Top Gear Australia presenter Shane Jacobson, got hot laps alongside the five-time Bathurst winner.
Clarkson has said the Bathurst 1000 is the only motor race he likes to watch.
‘‘He’s good. He took to it like a duck to water,’’ Lowndes said. ‘‘I was rubbish,’’ Clarkson said. The world’s highest-paid motoring journalist was not giving official interviews this week, and had a large entourage to ensure his personal space and working room for a television crew, but he was clearly having fun.
‘‘It’s fantastic. A proper car,’’ Clarkson said.
He completed around 20 laps of the track without incident, although he did lock the car’s brakes and got it sideways as he learned the limits.
‘‘That’s no drama,’’ Lowndes said.