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'Nam: we were all there man...
Series 12 may be over, but there’s one more calorie-filled slice of Top Gear goodness to look forward to before the end of the year: a 75-minute Vietnam special on BBC Two on December 28 at 8pm.
Following last year’s trip to the North Pole, this time the boys are off somewhere slightly hotter… and the truly scary news is that they’ve ditched cars in favour of motorbikes. Yes, you’re going to get to see Jezza on two wheels. That’s like seeing Alex Ferguson in a Manchester City kit. And high heels.
Still, judging by The Mole’s sneak preview it’s going to be awesome. The challenge, as ever, was a simple one: get from the bottom of Vietnam to the top: a mere 800-mile journey.
With a budget of several million Vietnamese Dong to spend on their bikes, things were looking easy. But it turns out that several million Vietnamese Dong translates into ‘roughly enough money to buy a packet of crisps’, so the boys’ motorbikes ended up being, well, not quite the mighty steeds they had in mind.
Richard ended up on a Russian-built Minsk, James on a Honda Cub, and Jeremy - because he has no idea about anything with less than four wheels - a very fetching green scooter.
Of course, there were plenty of daring and deeply hilarious challenges along the way. Sadly the Mole has been sworn to secrecy, but we can reveal that the boys were in uncharacteristically generous gift-giving mood to each other. Large, bulky, difficult-to-carry-on-motorbikes gifts. Well, it’s the thought that counts.
So, if you do nothing else this Christmas (apart from eating too much, then overcooking things on the post-lunch booze and saying something regrettable to a prudish relative), make sure that you watch the Top Gear Christmas Special, on BBC Two, 28 December at 8pm.