Top Gear host Jeremy Clarkson is set to drive a V8 Supercar at Warwick’s Morgan Park Raceway.
Top Gear host Jeremy Clarkson is set to drive a V8 Supercar at Warwick’s Morgan Park Raceway. Deanna Millard

Warwick thrown into Top Gear by stars’ visit

The Top Gear boys are headed for Warwick, so it seems. Justin Leighton

IT IS one of the world's most popular television shows, estimated to be watched by 350 million people across 170 countries, and next week Top Gear is set to roll into Morgan Park with a camera crew.

However the exact day, time, location and reason for their visit has been locked up tighter than Fort Knox and the Pentagon combined.

While the Daily News has been unable to have it confirmed or denied, metropolitan media reported Top Gear host Jeremy Clarkson would be test driving the new Microsoft Xbox-sponsored V8 Supercar in a deal brokered by former racer Mark Skaife in Warwick some time next week.

The test drive was originally meant to take place at the Holden Driving Centre at the Gold Coast.

But Top Gear was turned away by the Gold Coast Council, who were unable to relax their noise restrictions around the race track in time.

But it is not just BBC and Top Gear publicity officers keeping tight-lipped about the star's upcoming visit.

Morgan Park Raceway president Bill Campbell was able to confirm Top Gear was coming but said he was unable to say when or why.

Providing further truth to the rumour is the large order Steele's Bakery Cafe are preparing for a group of people, who have something to do with Mark Skaife, heading out to Morgan Park on Monday morning.

And while Top Gear were unable to sneak into the Gold Coast unnoticed, the Southern Downs Regional Council were either unaware of their impending visit or also had their lips sealed on the matter.

Warwick Tourism and Events CEO Tracy Vellacott was very excited by the news.

"What a fantastic coup for the hard-working Morgan Park Raceway team and this community," she said.

"Whilst I feel for Holden Driving Centre boss Paul Morris that council action resulted in the loss of this priceless publicity for the Gold Coast, fortunately the Southern Downs Regional Council sees value in events tourism, with a strong regard to motor racing.

"Council has genuine evidence of the value of the Morgan Park precinct to the local economy, but I think this announcement just gave it one hell of a fuel-injected lift."

Mrs Vellacott is certain the Top Gear team will be impressed with what Warwick has to offer.

"Jeremy Clarkson and his team will be wowed by both our facilities and our welcoming community," she said.

"Who needs glitz and glamour? Let them savour our authentic country way of life.

"As always, we'll over deliver and they'll be keen for another run around the Morgan Park track."

Mrs Vellacott said it was hard to comprehend that Morgan Park Raceway would be on show to over 350 million Top Gear viewers.

Southern Downs mayor Peter Blundell simply said the council was extremely supportive of a visit from Top Gear.

Stay tuned to the Warwick Daily News Facebook, online and print editions for more information.

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