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Clarkson Describes His View Of Hammond Crash: 'I Genuinely Thought He Was Dead'

Michael Minay

| Last updated 

Clarkson Describes His View Of Hammond Crash: 'I Genuinely Thought He Was Dead'

Jeremy Clarkson has written a blog about what he witnessed following Richard Hammond's horrific crash yesterday in Switzerland.

Clarkson, who had previously tweeted: "It was the biggest crash I've ever seen and the most frightening but incredible, and thankfully, Richard seems to be mostly OK."

Footage showed Hammond's car, the Rimac, skid and lose control before falling off the road and down a hill, later bursting into flames once Hammond had escaped.


Credit: Twitter

It brought back horrifying memories of the 2006 crash the presenter had whilst driving a rocket car at 288mph.

The former Top Gear presenter spoke of his colleague, who now present The Grand Tour together along with James May, after the news came that Hammond was largely unscathed by the massive crash.


Hammond was later videoed in hospital in good spirits. He started: "Hello, and yes it's true - I've binned it... Again."

Credit: Drivetribe

He showed off his heavily braced leg, along with an X-ray of what's going to happen to it.


Clarkson, meanwhile on drivetribe, said that some reports that Hammond was not familiar with the car, because the TV crew were in a rush to film, were untrue.

"Hammond had been driving the car solidly on motorways, airfields and closed mountain roads for four days," Clarkson wrote.

"He'd also done several runs on the hill climb that day. He knew the car well, he knew how fast it was, and he knew how to handle it in the bends.

"I don't know what went wrong. Hopefully, when he comes out of surgery and is feeling up to it, he will be able to tell us.


"What I do know is that I genuinely thought he was dead."

Clarkson explained that he had done his runs in the Lamborghini Aventador S and was back at base when he heard over the production radio that May and Hammond were to do one last run.

The 57-year-old jumped in the van to the finish line so that they could all be together and ready for the flight home.


The next moments, as Clarkson described in the blog, sound dramatic, terrible and scary.

Over the radio he heard that a driver had had an 'off'. "Fearful that the 'off' may be quite serious, I urged the driver to get to the top of the hill as quickly as possible," he wrote.

"I arrived maybe 30 seconds later and leaped out to see an inferno raging, maybe a quarter of a mile away, at the bottom of a hill.

"It was obvious from the skid marks what had happened. He'd lost it somehow on the final bend after the finishing and had plummeted down one bank onto a road lower down the hill, which had caused his car to flip.

"The big question was: had he managed to get out. No-one knew."

Credit: Twitter

It was James May who told Clarkson that Hammond was the one driving the car and described it as a "coldness" when he realised.

Thankfully, the news came that Hammond had escaped the car but was still in trouble. Paramedics were attending to him behind a screen.

Amidst the panic, a security guard ran down to check and radioed back to the pair on the hill saying: "It's all right fellas. He winked at me."

Clarkson ends the blog in the same banterous spirit that the trio share. "For all the rest, all the details, and who knows, another book; well I'll leave that up to Hammond when the lucky sod feels up for it."

Credit: PA

'Lucky' is definitely the right word, that's two near-death experience the Hamster has shared, but we're grateful. The trio of Clarkson, Hammond and May have provided us so many laughs over the year, delivering factual car-related programmes in the best presenting style known to man - it'd be such a shame if anything broke that up.

Topics: richard hammond, james may, The Grand Tour, Jeremy Clarkson, Top Gear

Michael Minay
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