A Strabane motoring enthusiast, tipped by locals to be as good as Jeremy Clarkson in terms of knowledge of cars, has failed to impress BBC producers following a dry run at presenting the show yesterday.
John O’Connell (44) is said to be fuming at the decision, accusing Top Gear officials of not thinking outside the box when it comes to presentational style. BBC bosses however rejected the criticism and reiterated their belief that the presenter cannot simply say “Jaysus boys thon’s tara” for every car he tries out.
Footage leaked from the pilot show sees O’Connell raking about in a new Audi shouting comments like ‘yeehar‘ and ‘shoe til the burd boys, shoe til the burd‘ before getting out of it, kicking the tyres, and turning to the camera, saying ‘Jaysus boys thon’s tara“. The exact same scenario followed when he tested out a new BMW.
O’Connell defended his style:
“Everyone has a catchphrase. If I’d been given a fair deal, everyone would be saying ‘Jaysus boys thon’s tara’ from the playground to business meetings, after a few episodes. BBC are just playing it safe and that’s disappointingly short-sighted from them.”
BBC also released footage of O’Connell using bleeped-out expletives during crucial scenes. One example showed the Strabane man shouting ‘f**k me boys, that’s deadly‘ after doing a handbrake turn in a Ferrari.
O’Connell maintains he will attempt to keep his presenting dream alive by applying for a job on The Sunday Game on RTE as a cover for Joe Brolly who is reportedly eyeing up the X-Factor role.
10am: COUL – Edendork amateur production of Frozen, featuring classics such as ‘Do You Want To Build An Extension Around The Back’ and ‘Let Her Go, Ye Boy Ye’
12pm: POINTLESS – fly-on-the-wall documentary following Peter Canavan around Ballygawley as he tries to grow hair by eating more fruit
4pm: GAME OF THRONES – Reality show as language experts tour towns and villages trying to get locals to pronounce their county as Tyrone and not Throne
6pm: WOULD I LIE TO YOU? – Live debate as shady business men try to convince us that mining the Sperrins is great fun and fracking is even better
9.45pm: CINDERELLA – Reality TV series continues as a Moortown woman returns to the Glenavon disco with all her brothers one week after her shoe was stolen, to find the culprit
11pm: OPEN ALL HOURS – Comedy as seasoned Tessie’s drinkers relive the best nights and fights in Dorman’s shebeen at Clonoe crossroads
9am: TOP GEAR – Light entertainment show as a Trillick entrepreneur reveals the secrets behind his ‘alternative fuel’ business as well as his thriving DVD sideline
11am: UP – Emotional documentary of Derrytresk’s promotion season
1pm: SKYFALL – Historical drama as Stewartstown residents remember the first time they saw snow coming down
3:30pm: THE GREAT ESCAPE – Thiller as Malachi Cush plays a traffic warden who was accidentally stationed in Coalisland only to be met with stern resistance
5pm: – HERBIE GOES BANANAS – Story of Omagh man Herbie Kelly who put £300 on Tyrone to beat Armagh last July
7:30pm: – PHILOMENA – Autobiographical drama as Scarlett Johansson plays Philomena Begley in the story of her astronomical rise out of Pomeroy to international acclaim
10pm: – CLOSE ENCOUNTERS OF THE THIRD KIND – Thriller as the bru man visits houses in Augher, Clogher and Fivemiletown
The controversial television presenter Jeremy Clarkson was once again mired in controversy yesterday about a Tyrone-based filming of BBC2’s Top Gear, when he is said to have inadvertently muttered the word ‘Brolly’ by accident.
The episode, parts of which were released on YouTube, was filmed in a disused quarry near Orritor, which Clarkson is said to have wanted to use to, ‘drive tractors into each other and maybe blow up some caravans’.
But thousands of residents were last night demanding the presenter’s resignation after an incident which has once again embroiled the presenter in further controversy. The use of the B-word occurred when Clarkson was trying to choose between two vehicles, one a New Holland T7030 Delta and the other a John Deere 6330 Platinum, during which he is alleged to have said, “I really can’t choose between the two, they’re both brilliant”, but, on several careful listening of the recording may or may not have come out as, “I really can’t choose between the two, they’re both Brolly-ant”.
Many Tyrone residents were outraged.
“The hoor”, said Liam Donnelly, a pot hole maker from Urney. “Thon Clarkson needs to go. This is beyond a joke. If I actually bothered paying my licence fee I’d definitely stop. It’s only this past month I’ve been able to switch the telly on again after the RTE incident with that commentator last year. See? I can’t even bring myself to say Joe Brolly’s name. Oh”.
62-year old Conal Mulgrew, a trapeze artist from Seskinore, said,
“Top Gear’s had its day, although to be fair the last time I watched it they were reviewing the new Hillman Hunter, so it’s been a while. I don’t really bother. They don’t do nearly enough stuff about link boxes. Bet that would get the viewing figures up. Still, he can’t go about saying words like that. There might have been wee’ans watching. Or Sean Cavanagh’s oul wans”.
In a separate incident, complaints have also been made to the BBC about The Stig, who said that diffing was for ligs.