Grand Tour: Clarkson, Hammond and May spotted filming in Scotland
3 classic American cars, 3 caravans and 1 COVID-19 testing unit.
Clarkson, Hammond and May have overcome their fair share of challenges. Between them, they have endured car crashes, controversy and unrenewed contracts yet remain undefeated. So when it came to filming series 5 of the Grand Tour in the midst of a global pandemic that didn't stop them either...
In fact, the trio are can currently be found behind the wheel of classic American cars - a Buick, a Lincoln and a Cadillac - as they make their way from Edinburgh to the Hebrides for the hit Amazon show.
Due to the uncertainty of quarantines, local restrictions and possible health risks surrounding foreign travel, Grand Tour producer Andy Wilman (yes, that Mr Wilman) said the trio chose to film in Scotland. He told local press,
“The Grand Tour is not really allowed to go grand touring as we risk a sudden lockdown. You’d be crazy to spend time and money planning and then suddenly find there’s someplace you can’t go – it’s much better to get in your cars and go somewhere where you’ve got the best chance of finishing the film. We were thinking ‘where is the nearest most beautiful place?’ and that’s Scotland, so we came here. They love all parts of Scotland.”
Clarkson, Hammond and May were first spotted in the Pitlochry area of Perthshire last week. This is the first time they have filmed in the town since 2013, when Clarkson explored the area in a Ferrari F12 on Top Gear whilst claiming he was in Hertfordshire.
Despite this stunt causing outcry from many local residents at the time, general manager of the Atholl Palace Hotel, Graeme Strachan, was delighted give the Amazon crew run of the four-star hotel for the night and said "We were absolutely delighted that they have chosen to come and film here, it’s great for Pitlochry and the surrounding area. The three guys were great and an absolute pleasure to meet them all and I am delighted they chose the Atholl Palace and area to come to."
A few days later, the trio were spotted on the North Coast 500 in the highland area with their own caravans and a mobile coronavirus testing unit in tow. Some lucky fans were able to catch a glimpse of them as they circled the car park of the Torridon Hotel in Wester Ross.
However, it may be wise to watch this space as the Hebrides is currently at the centre of a coronavirus cluster despite its rural nature.
Their presence has brought a desirable boost to the Scottish economy and I'm sure I speak on behalf of many Grand Tour fans and fellow Scots when I say I'm delighted to see them filming in Scotland again and wish them all a safe stay. Plus, they can now add 'survived abuse by protestors at the Scottish Borders' to their list of achievements...