You know I am The Stig, right?
The identity of Top Gear’s Stig has always been one of the modern age’s greatest mysteries. Who was this enigma, this shadowy colossus who could fling a car around the show’s track with more speed and precision than any other human? Well, now we know. It turns out that the Stig was not a Formula One racer, or a Bugatti test driver, or a robot – but Ben Collins, a former Formula Three driver, described on his website as having “a reputation for being fast and aggressive”.
The question is this: if the Stig is dead, then who’ll be the new Stig? Because, make no mistake, there will be another Stig. Collins was himself was a replacement, stepping in after original Stig Perry McCarthy was struck down by a similar case of revealed identity in 2003. The whole beauty of the Stig is that we don’t know who he is. He’s just a jumpsuit and a helmet, the contents of which are eminently replaceable. James May said as much yesterday.
But that still leaves the dilemma of who the Top Gear producers should hire as the new stig. Luckily, I’ve had some ideas about this…
A Star In A Reasonably-Priced Car
Over the years Top Gear has uncovered some incredibly fast celebrities, so why not make employ one of them as the Stig? Everyone wins – the show gets a Stig with plenty of high-performance driving experience, and the celebrity gets to lark around in hundreds of brand new supercars. The downside, obviously, is that if Top Gear wanted one of the fastest celebrities, it would be forced to hire either Simon Cowell or Tom Cruise (too expensive) or Jay Kay from Jamiroquai (too overwhelmingly obnoxious for anybody to reasonably stand on a weekly basis).
A Formula One driver
The benefits of this option are two-fold. First, there’s the unbeatable technical quality and expertise that a Formula One Stig would bring to Top Gear. Second, if the Stig loses his temper and reveals himself to be Nigel Mansell or Damon Hill or Jenson Button or Rubens Barrichello, people will already know who he is.
An old Top Gear presenter
The sensible choice for everyone. The presence of an original Top Gear host would help the show return to its motoring roots. Obviously the first choice here would be Tiff Needell for his extensive racing background, although Quentin Wilson, Chris Goffey, Noel Edmonds or Angela Rippon would also make suitable candidates.
These, however, are just my ideas. You will have plenty of your own. So who should Top Gear hire as the new Stig? Leave your thoughts below – just don’t expect to find out whether Top Gear took your advice …
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