The thoughts of Chris Gurton on motorsport, his photography, his work and his life in general. The thoughts, views and opinion's expressed in this blog are those of Chris Gurton and not necessarily those of any publication that he contributes to.

Who’s the Stig?

Everyone hates Sunday evenings right? Let’s face it, it’s the last few hours of the weekend and you’ve got to set your alarm clock and go back to work in the morning. However, thanks to the BBC, the next few Sunday evenings have been made a whole lot better.

I am of course talking about the return of Top Gear to our screens. Of course, the new series is as good as ever with Clarkson, Hammond & May up to their usual tricks, which included landing a helicopter on a car, dropping a VW Beetle from a mile up and finding Sienna Miller in the glove box of a Skoda Yetti. No doubt the local Skoda dealers have been inundated with enquiries about said car from men wondering if Sienna comes as standard or is an optional extra.
However, the big talking point was the new Stig. We all know the reasons behind the departure of the previous one, which led to a hilarious drive by Stig shooting challenge during the American special show at Christmas, but now everyone is trying to work out who the new one is.

The guys are back for another fantastic series.

Tongues are wagging, forums are buzzing and social networks are full of suggestions as to who is the mysterious man in white, ranging from Indian F1 driver Karun Chandhok, to James Mays mum, who featured in an early series test driving small cars. Everyone seems to have an opinion on who it may be. Despite Tiff Needel featuring in the most recent episode and a prior one too, could it be a bluff and actually be him? Another popular opinion is former F1 driver and current Peugeot LMS driver Anthony Davidson, and the probably the favourite, or at least amongst every male petrol head is the Queen of the Nurburgring, Sabine Schmitz. After all, she has featured a few times on the show, but would it be so obvious?

One thing I can categorically say for fact is that the Stig is none of the current HRT F1 drivers. Last I heard they still have 15 laps of the Belgium Grand Prix to complete so they are far too busy. Also, Sakon Yamamoto was offered a drive in the reasonably fast car, but after the first bend he stopped, got out and ran away in fear of the raw speed of the Kia C’eed. 45mph was just too much for him to handle. Needless to say, the bosses at HRT were not happy to have to spend money from their almost none existent budget on 2 weeks in rehab to aid his recovery.

So who is the new Stig?

As for me? Who do I think the new Stig is? Well, having seen the making of the Jeremy Clarkson DVD ‘The Italian Job’ there is a racing driver they used for a few of the pieces involving Ferrari’s. Now, I could well be wrong, but Clarkson obviously thinks highly of this guy and I have sneaky suspicion it could well be him. Will we be reading books about his life in a few years to come? That remains to be seen, but my guess is firmly with this bloke.

His name?………

……Niki Faulkner

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