Top Gear’s future in doubt: Editorial director quits BBC show months after co-star Freddie Flintoff’s departure as he recovers from horror crash
- Clare Pizey is leaving BBC Studios after seven years at the company
Top Gear’s future is uncertain as its editorial director has quit just months after Andrew ‘Freddie’ Flintoff left the show following his dramatic crash.
Clare Pizey will leave after seven years at BBC studios and having been editorial director of the show since March last year.
Her departure comes more than eight months after Top Gear co-presenter Mr Flintoff was involved in an accident which brought the filming of series 34 to a halt.
Ms Pizey wrote on Instagram she was leaving BBC Studios and said it had ‘been a privilege’ to work on the show, adding she was ‘so grateful to the incredibly talented production teams and presenters’.
A spokesperson from BBC studios said: ‘Top Gear’s editorial director Clare Pizey is leaving BBC Studios after seven years.
Top Gear’s editorial director Clare Pizey is leaving BBC Studios after seven years at the company
Pizey had become Top Gear’s editorial director in 2022 and was previously co-executive producer on the show
She has quit just months after Andrew ‘Freddie’ Flintoff left the show following his dramatic crash
‘With co-executive producer Alex Renton, Clare reinvented and re-energised the motoring entertainment show with the introduction of Paddy [McGuinness], Freddie and Chris [Harris] – and she oversaw Top Gear’s hugely successful move to BBC One in 2020.
‘During her time at BBC Studios Clare also executive produced Children in Need, Sport Relief and Top Gear spin-off format The Getaway Car.
‘We wish her the very best of luck with her next adventure.’
Former professional cricketer Mr Flintoff, 45, was taken to hospital after being involved in the accident while shooting for the show at Dunsfold Aerodrome in Surrey in December last year.
He was airlifted to hospital with facial injuries and broken ribs after the car he was driving – an open-topped three-wheel 130mph Morgan Super 3 which doesn’t have air bags – flipped over at Dunsfold Aerodrome in Surrey.
An insider previously told The Times: ‘Freddie has been seriously emotionally and physically affected by the crash.
‘He is a daredevil, that’s what he does, and he doesn’t feel like he is able to continue to play that role on the show.’
Former professional cricketer Mr Flintoff, 45, was taken to hospital after being involved in the accident while shooting for the show at Dunsfold Aerodrome in Surrey in December last year
Andrew ‘Freddie’ Flintoff (pictured) was seriously injured in a crash while filming Top Gear
After the incident his 16-year-old son Corey told MailOnline: ‘He’s OK. I’m not too sure what happened but he is lucky to be alive.
‘It was a pretty nasty crash. It is shocking. We are all shocked but just hope he’s going to be OK.’
That same month, the BBC said ‘it would be inappropriate to resume making series 34 of Top Gear at this time’ following an internal investigation into the accident.
The incident was said to have left the cast and crew ‘reeling from the shock’, with concerns over the future of the show which has had a history of serious crashes.
Presenters Jeremy Clarkson, Richard Hammond and James May left Top Gear in 2015 and Flintoff joined during series 27 to present alongside McGuinness and Harris.
The PA news agency understands a decision on the timing of future Top Gear shows will be made in conjunction with BBC Content in due course.
MailOnline has contacted the BBC for further comment.
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