Lotus designs a pair of new test tracks for Top Gear Live

Few circuits in the world have gained as much notoriety as the Top Gear test track in Surrey, England. The show's private playground plays host to the best performance machines and biggest celebrities. But Clarkson and company didn't design the track themselves, it was set up by Lotus.

Now, Top Gear has again turned to Lotus to design two new tracks for the Top Gear Live traveling show. The courses, B20 Raceway and Docklands GP, will be set up at the NEC in Birmingham and the ExCel center in London, respectively, where thousands of fans will gather for the veritable automotive circus. Each circuit is set up differently, and the corners will be individually named, with an opportunity for fans to vote on the names of one at each track.

Clarkson, Hammond, May and The Stig will perform, of course, as well as Ring-mistress Sabine Schmitz, rival presenter Tiff Needell and five-time Le Mans winner Derek Bell. An array of celebrities will battle for the top spot in the on-site Star in a Reasonably Priced Car competition. The highlights of the show, however, are sure to be supercars like the McLaren MP4-12C, Lamborghini Aventador and Ferrari 599 GTO, classic Group B rally cars and F1 racers past and present.

Follow the jump for the press release and check out the track layouts in the gallery.
Show full PR text
Top Gear Live, London & Birmingham November 2011

Top Gear Live is developing an indoor track extravaganza in partnership with Group Lotus Motorsport, designers of the original Top Gear test-track. The track will be the central feature of its all-new Top Gear Live event running from 11-13 November at NEC Birmingham and 24-27 November at ExCeL London.

Top Gear favourites including German race sensation Sabine Schmitz and Tiff Needell will join five-time Le Mans winner, Derek Bell, and an extensive list of other celebrity guests, drivers and presenters on track at the two events.

The all-new track element will feature power laps by Top Gear's very own tame racing driver The Stig as well as challenges for presenters Clarkson, Hammond and May. And, of course, there will be a host of celebrities vying for the top spot in Top Gear Live's very own Star in a Reasonably Priced Car.

The tracks have been configured to enable all manner of driving disciplines during a full programme of incredible action. These will include head-to-head challenges, power testing and time trials, ensuring there's plenty of live action throughout the event.

The tracks have been named 'Docklands GP' (ExCeL track) and 'B20 Raceway' (NEC track), and visitors can get a preview of what is waiting for them at the show with both track layouts available to see at www.topgearlive.co.uk. In the tradition of the Top Gear track's 'Hammerhead' and 'Gambon' corners, these custom-built indoor tracks will also have named corners and Top Gear Live fans will have the opportunity to name one of the corners at each track in a competition launching next week via facebook.com/TopGearLiveUK

Gavan Kershaw, Engineering Manager at Group Lotus Motorsport said: "We're enjoying the challenge of working with the Top Gear Live team to design two tracks that are both exciting and credible for this event.

"We believe the end result will ensure an awesome experience for both the drivers and spectators with plenty of noise and burning rubber!"

In addition to the interactive on-track activity, there will be supercar parades featuring iconic models such as the new McLaren MP4-12C, Lamborghini Aventador and Ferrari 599 GTO, as well as legendary group B rally cars and a celebration of F1 past and present, all live on the track. All this will be supported by fantastic challenges and cars modified beyond recognition – synonymous with Top Gear!

This year's Top Gear Live is expected to attract tens of thousands of visitors keen to see the world-famous presenters, guest drivers and celebrities in action and take part in this true celebration of all things motoring. Visitors are encouraged to book early so as not to miss the most exciting event on this year's entertainment and motoring calendar.

Share This Photo X