Paddy McGuinness and Freddie Flintoff to replace Matt LeBlanc and Rory Reid on “Top Gear”

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The new Top Gear trio

The new Top Gear trio

BBC’s “Top Gear” is set for yet another shake-up of its hosts. We’ve known that “Friends” actor Matt LeBlanc was stepping away from the show since late May, and now we know who is set to replace him. The job falls to two gents, actually, as host Rory Reid is also moving back from main hosting duty. Set to take the place of LeBlanc and Reid are Paddy McGuinness and Freddie Flintoff. 

The news was announced on TopGear.com on Monday.

McGuinness is an English comedian with a number of hosting gigs under his belt. Flintoff is a former English cricket champion and self-described lover of cars. Speaking to TopGear.com, Flintoff said, “It’s not often you have the chance to do both of your dream jobs, but I’m now lucky enough to say I will have. I’ve always been passionate about cars and I’m so excited to be joining the ‘Top Gear’ team.”

Series 26 with LeBlanc and Reid as hosts will run in early 2019, probably with six episodes. Series 27 will follow later in the year. That’s when the new duo will join Chris Harris.

Former host Reid isn’t disappearing from the family completely. Reid is stepping back to helm the companion show “Extra Gear.” He’ll work alongside Sabine Schmitz to bring extra bits of “Top Gear” goodness to the fans. While we’re glad to see Reid remain part of the team, we lament the fact that the BBC pushed him out of the main trio. Reid was coming into his own, and his recent segments were some of our favorites to watch.

It will be interesting to see how Harris gets along with his new team. He developed a great rapport with LeBlanc and Reid, at least on camera.

Regardless of the change in hosts, we can count on “Top Gear” to deliver stunning visuals of some of our favorite cars.

Now Flintoff and McGuinness just need to work on their drifting skills if they want to keep up with Harris.

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