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Richard Mark Hammond (born 19 December 1969) is an English
television presenter A television presenter (often referred to as a television personality) is a person who introduces or hosts television show, television programs, often serving as a mediator for the program and the audience. Nowadays, it is common for people who ga ...
, writer, and journalist. He is best known for co-hosting the BBC Two car programme '' Top Gear'' from 2002 until 2015 with
Jeremy Clarkson Jeremy Charles Robert Clarkson (born 11 April 1960) is an English broadcaster, journalist and writer who specialises in motoring. He is best known for the motoring programmes '' Top Gear'' and ''The Grand Tour ''The Grand Tour'' is a Bri ...

Jeremy Clarkson
and James May. In 2016, Hammond began presenting ''
The Grand Tour ''The Grand Tour'' is a British motoring television series, created by Jeremy Clarkson, Richard Hammond, James May, and Andy Wilman, made for Amazon Studios, Amazon exclusively for its online streaming service Prime Video, Amazon Prime Video, ...
'' television series. The show is co-presented with his former ''Top Gear'' co-hosts, Jeremy Clarkson and James May. In November 2016, Hammond, alongside the co-presenters of ''
The Grand Tour ''The Grand Tour'' is a British motoring television series, created by Jeremy Clarkson, Richard Hammond, James May, and Andy Wilman, made for Amazon Studios, Amazon exclusively for its online streaming service Prime Video, Amazon Prime Video, ...
'', Jeremy Clarkson and James May, launched the automotive social media website DriveTribe, where he regularly provides content on his tribe "Hammond's Fob Jockeys". He has also presented '' Brainiac: Science Abuse'' (2003–2008), '' Total Wipeout'' (2009–2012) and '' Planet Earth Live'' (2012).


Early life

Richard Mark Hammond was born the oldest of three boys on 19 December 1969 in
Solihull Solihull (, or ) is a large historic market town A market town is a European Human settlement, settlement that obtained by custom or royal charter, in the Middle Ages, the right to host market (place), markets (market right), which disting ...
, and is the grandson of workers in the
Birmingham Birmingham ( ) is a City status in the United Kingdom, city and metropolitan borough in the West Midlands (county), West Midlands, England. It is the second-largest city, urban area and ESPON metropolitan areas in the United Kingdom, metropoli ...
car industry. In the mid-1980s Hammond moved with his family (mother Eileen (née Dunsby), father Alan, and younger brothers Andrew, writer of the 'Crypt' series, and Nicholas) to the
North Yorkshire North Yorkshire is the largest non-metropolitan county and lieutenancy area in England England is a Countries of the United Kingdom, country that is part of the United Kingdom. It shares land borders with Wales to its west and Scotland ...
cathedral city of Ripon located 10 miles south of the market town of
Bedale
Bedale
, and 8 miles south of the historic village of Thornton Watlass where his father ran a probate business in the market square. He attended Blossomfield Infant School in Solihull's Sharmans Cross district from the age of 3–7. Originally a pupil of Solihull School, a fee-paying boys' independent school, he moved to Ripon Grammar School, and from 1986 to 1988 attended Harrogate College, Harrogate College of Art and Technology.


Career

After graduation, Hammond worked for several BBC radio stations, including BBC Radio Tees, Radio Cleveland, BBC Radio York, Radio York, BBC Radio Cumbria, Radio Cumbria, BBC Radio Leeds, Radio Leeds and BBC Radio Newcastle, Radio Newcastle. Presenting the afternoon programme at BBC Radio Lancashire, Radio Lancashire, his regular guests included motoring journalist Zogg Zieglar, who would review a car of the week by being interviewed by Hammond over the phone. The two became good friends, and it was Zieglar who encouraged Hammond to enter into motoring reviews on television. After starting out on satellite TV, he auditioned for ''Top Gear''.


''Top Gear''

Hammond became a presenter on ''Top Gear'' in 2002, when the show began in its revamped format. He is sometimes referred to as "The Hamster" by fans and his co-presenters on ''Top Gear'' due to his name and relatively small stature compared to May and Clarkson. His nickname was further reinforced when on three occasions in Top Gear (series 7), series 7, he ate cardboard, mimicking hamster-like behaviour. Following a #Vampire dragster crash, high-speed dragster crash while filming in September 2006 near York, Hammond returned in the first episode of Top Gear (series 9), series 9 (broadcast on 28 January 2007) to a hero's welcome, complete with dancing girls, aeroplane-style stairs and fireworks. The show also contained images of the crash, which had made international headlines, with Hammond talking through the events of the day after which the audience broke into spontaneous applause. Hammond then requested that the crash never be mentioned on the show again, though all three ''Top Gear'' presenters have since referred to it in jokes during the news segment of the programme. He told his colleagues, "The only difference between me now, and before the crash, is that I like celery now and I didn't before".Following the BBC's decision not to renew Clarkson's contract with the show on 25 March 2015, Hammond's contract expired on 31 March. In April he ruled out the possibility of continuing to present ''Top Gear'', commenting via Twitter that "amidst all this talk of us 'quitting' or not: there's nothing for me to 'quit' not about to quit my mates anyway". On 12 June 2015 the BBC confirmed that ''Top Gear'' would return with a 75-minute special, combining two unseen challenges featuring all three presenters from series 22, with studio links from Hammond and May. It aired in the UK on BBC Two on 28 June at 8 p.m, and in the United States on BBC America on 13 July at 9 p.m.


''Vampire'' dragster crash

During filming of a ''Top Gear'' segment at the former RAF Elvington airbase near York on 20 September 2006, Hammond was injured in the crash of the jet-powered car he was piloting. He was travelling at at the time of the crash. His vehicle, a dragster called ''Vampire (car), Vampire'', was theoretically capable of travelling at speeds of up to . The vehicle was the same car that in 2000, piloted by Colin Fallows, set the British land speed record at . The ''Vampire'' was powered by a single Bristol-Siddeley Bristol Siddeley Orpheus, Orpheus afterburning turbojet engine producing of thrust. Some accounts suggested that the accident occurred during an attempt to break the British land speed record, but the Health and Safety Executive report on the crash found that a proposal to try to officially break the record was vetoed in advance by ''Top Gear'' executive producer Andy Wilman, due to the risks and complexities of such a venture. The report stated: "Runs were to be carried out in only one direction along a pre-set course on the Elvington runway. Vampire’s speed was to be recorded using GPS satellite telemetry. The intention was to record the maximum speed, not to measure an average speed over a measured course, and for (Hammond) to describe how it felt." Hammond was completing a seventh and final run to collect extra footage for the programme when his front-right tyre failed, and, according to witness and paramedic Dave Ogden, "one of the parachutes had deployed but it went on to the grass and spun over and over before coming to a rest about 100 yards from us." The emergency crew quickly arrived at the car, finding it inverted and partially embedded in the grass. During the roll, Hammond's helmet had embedded itself into the ground, flipping the visor up and forcing soil into his mouth and damaging his left eye. Rescuers felt a pulse and heard the unconscious Hammond breathing before the car was turned upright. Hammond was cut free with Hydraulic rescue tools, hydraulic shears, and placed on a Long spine board, backboard. "He was regaining consciousness at that point and said he had some lower back pain". He was then transported by the Yorkshire Air Ambulance to the neurological unit of the Leeds General Infirmary. Hammond's family visited him at the hospital along with ''Top Gear'' co-presenters James May and Jeremy Clarkson. Clarkson wished Hammond well, saying "Both James and I are looking forward to getting our 'Hamster' back", referring to Hammond by his nickname. For five weeks while Hammond was recovering in hospital, Clarkson sent a funny message to Mindy, Hammond's wife, every day to try to keep her going. Hammond thought if everyone found out, Clarkson would "die of shame" "cos it makes him look soppy". The Health & Safety Executive report stated that "Hammond's instantaneous reaction to the tyre blow-out seems to have been that of a competent high performance car driver, namely to brake the car and to try to steer into the skid. Immediately afterwards he also seems to have followed his training and to have pulled back on the main parachute release lever, thus shutting down the jet engine and also closing the jet and afterburner fuel levers. The main parachute did not have time to deploy before the car ran off the runway." The HSE notes that, based on the findings of the North Yorkshire Police (who investigated the crash), "the accident may not have been recoverable", even if Hammond's efforts to react were as fast as "humanly possible". Hammond made his first TV appearance since the crash on the BBC chat show ''Friday Night with Jonathan Ross'' on 22 December, just three months after the incident, where he revealed he was in a severe coma for two weeks and afterwards suffered from post-traumatic amnesia and a five-second memory. Despite saying he was "absolutely fixed" on the Jonathan Ross episode, in 2011, while talking to the ''Daily Mirror'', Hammond admitted he had no memory of the interview, saying: "I lost a year. I don’t remember doing the interview with Jonathan Ross or doing Top Gear Live in South Africa" showing the full impact of his brain injury 5 years before. The crash was shown on an episode of ''Top Gear'' on 28 January 2007 (Season 9, Episode 1); this was the first episode of the new series, which had been postponed pending Hammond's recovery. Hammond requested at the end of the episode that his fellow presenters never mention the crash again, a request which has been generally observed, although occasional oblique references have been made by all three presenters. ''On The Edge: My Story'', which contains first-hand accounts from both Hammond and his wife about the crash, immediate aftermath, and his recovery, was published later that year. In February 2008, Hammond gave an interview to ''The Sunday Times'' newspaper in which he described the effects of his Traumatic brain injury, brain injuries and the progression of his recovery. He reported suffering Amnesia, loss of memory, Major depressive disorder, depression and difficulties with emotional experiences, for which he was consulting a psychiatrist. He also talked about his recovery in a 2010 television programme where he interviewed Stirling Moss, Sir Stirling Moss and they discussed the brain injuries they had both received as a result of car crashes.


''Brainiac: Science Abuse''

In 2003, Hammond became the first presenter of '' Brainiac: Science Abuse''; he was joined by Jon Tickle and Charlotte Hudson in series 2. After the fourth series it was announced that Hammond was no longer going to present the Sky1 show after he signed an exclusive deal with the BBC. Vic Reeves took his place as main presenter.


Other television work

Early in his career, as well as his radio work, Hammond presented a number of daytime lifestyle shows and motoring programmes such as ''Motor Week'' on Men & Motors. He presented the ''Crufts'' dog show in 2005, the 2004 and 2005 British Parking Awards, and has appeared on ''School's Out (TV series), School's Out'', a quiz show on BBC One where celebrities answer questions about things they learned at school. He has also presented ''The Gunpowder Plot: Exploding The Legend''. Along with his work on ''Top Gear'', he presented ''Should I Worry About...?'' on BBC One, ''Time Commanders'' on BBC Two and the first four series of '' Brainiac: Science Abuse'' on Sky 1. He was also a team captain on the BBC Two quiz show, ''Petrolheads'', in which a memorable part was one where Hammond was tricked into bumping his classic Ferrari while trying to parallel park blindfolded in another car. In 2006, Hammond fronted the ''Richard Hammond's 5 O'Clock Show'' with his co-presenter Mel Giedroyc. The programme, which discussed a wide range of topics, was shown every weekday on ITV (TV network), ITV between 17:00 and 18:00. In July 2005, Hammond was voted one of the top 10 British TV talents. He presented ''Richard Hammond and the Holy Grail'' in 2006. During the special, he travelled to various locations around the world, including the Vatican Secret Archives, exploring the history of the Holy Grail. As part of Comic Relief, Red Nose Day 2007, Hammond stood for nomination via a public telephone vote, along with Andy Hamilton and Kelvin MacKenzie, to be a one-off co-presenter of BBC Radio 4's ''Woman's Hour'' on 16 March 2007. However, he was defeated by Andy Hamilton. In April 2007, Hammond presented a one off special on BBC Radio 2 for Good Friday followed by another in August 2007 for the bank holiday. Hammond recorded an interview with the famed American stunt performer, stuntman Evel Knievel, which aired on 23 December 2007 on BBC Two, and was Knievel's last interview before his death on 30 November 2007. In September 2008, Hammond presented the first episode of a new series; ''Richard Hammond's Engineering Connections'' on the National Geographic Channel (UK), National Geographic Channel. In this show, Hammond discovered how the inventions of the past, along with assistance from nature, help designers today. Episodes include the building of the Airbus A380, Taipei 101 and the W. M. Keck Observatory, Keck Observatory. Series 2 of ''Richard Hammond's Engineering Connections'' began in May 2010 and has included the building of the Wembley Stadium and the Sydney Opera House. Hammond appeared in an advertisement for Morrisons supermarkets in 2008, and joined the cast of TV show ''Ashes to Ashes (British TV series), Ashes To Ashes'' for a special insert on the 2008 Children in Need special. While in New Zealand for ''Top Gear Live 2009'', Hammond filmed several television commercials for Telecom New Zealand's new XT Mobile Network, XT UTMS mobile network. Telecom claimed that the new network was "faster in more places", compared to its competitors and its existing CDMA network. After the network suffered three highly publicised outages in late 2009 and early 2010, Hammond became the butt of a joke when he did not return to New Zealand for ''Top Gear Live 2010''. His fellow ''Top Gear'' co-hosts said he was too embarrassed to come back to New Zealand, and in a supposed live feed back to Hammond, the feed suddenly drops out as the "XT Network had crashed". Hammond was later given the right of reply to his colleagues during an interview with Marcus Lush on RadioLIVE's breakfast show in New Zealand. Hammond hosted the UK version of the US series ''Wipeout (2008 U.S. game show), Wipeout'', called '' Total Wipeout'' for BBC One. It took place in Argentina, and was co-presented by Hammond and Amanda Byram. Hammond presented and performed the voiceover for the clips in a London studio, and Byram was filmed at the obstacle course in Buenos Aires. The series was cancelled at the end of 2012. Hammond also presented a science-themed game show for children, ''Richard Hammond's Blast Lab'' which aired on BBC Two and CBBC. In March 2010, Hammond presented a three episode series called ''Richard Hammond's Invisible Worlds'', which looked at things too fast for the naked eye to see, things that are beyond the visible spectrum (e.g., ultraviolet and infra-red light), as well as microscopic things. One of Hammond's lesser known television roles was as presenter of the BBC Two gameshow ''Time Commanders'', a sophisticated warfare simulator which used a modified version of Creative Assembly's ''Rome: Total War'' game engine. Since February 2011, Hammond has presented an online technology series ''Richard Hammond's Tech Head''. In July 2011, Hammond presented a two-part natural science documentary ''Richard Hammond's Journey to the Centre of the Planet'', focused on Earth geology and plate tectonics. In April 2012, Hammond hosted a BBC America programme titled ''Richard Hammond's Crash Course'', which was also shown in the UK from September 2012 on BBC Two. In May 2012, Hammond co-presented an animal documentary for BBC One called '' Planet Earth Live'' alongside Julia Bradbury. The programme recorded animals living in extreme conditions. In June 2014, Hammond presented a scientific fourteen part series on National Geographic Channel titled ''Science of Stupid'' which focused on the application of physics in everyday life. In December, Hammond presented a three-part science documentary for BBC One called ''Wild Weather with Richard Hammond'' which focuses on the hidden world of our Earth's extreme weather system. In September 2015, Hammond presented a two-part documentary for Sky 1 called ''Richard Hammond's Jungle Quest'', supported by Sky Rainforest Rescue. In March 2017, whilst filming for ''
The Grand Tour ''The Grand Tour'' is a British motoring television series, created by Jeremy Clarkson, Richard Hammond, James May, and Andy Wilman, made for Amazon Studios, Amazon exclusively for its online streaming service Prime Video, Amazon Prime Video, ...
'' in Mozambique, Hammond fell off a motorbike. He reportedly hit his head and became unconscious; further details, however, will only be revealed in series two of the show. During the season finale of ''
The Grand Tour ''The Grand Tour'' is a British motoring television series, created by Jeremy Clarkson, Richard Hammond, James May, and Andy Wilman, made for Amazon Studios, Amazon exclusively for its online streaming service Prime Video, Amazon Prime Video, ...
'' season three, Hammond, James May and
Jeremy Clarkson Jeremy Charles Robert Clarkson (born 11 April 1960) is an English broadcaster, journalist and writer who specialises in motoring. He is best known for the motoring programmes '' Top Gear'' and ''The Grand Tour ''The Grand Tour'' is a Bri ...

Jeremy Clarkson
announced the current format was coming to the end and later announced that there would be two more seasons of specials, without the tent or live audience. In January 2021, Hammond starred alongside ''Mythbusters'' Tory Belleci in ''The Great Escapists'', a fictional six-episode adventure series for Amazon, which was produced by Chimp Productions. The series stranded the pair on a deserted island where they used the resources they could find to build the means to survive.


Rimac Concept One crash

On 10 June 2017, Hammond crashed a Rimac Concept One while filming for ''
The Grand Tour ''The Grand Tour'' is a British motoring television series, created by Jeremy Clarkson, Richard Hammond, James May, and Andy Wilman, made for Amazon Studios, Amazon exclusively for its online streaming service Prime Video, Amazon Prime Video, ...
'' in Hemberg, St. Gallen, Hemberg, Switzerland. Hammond was on his last run up a timed hill climb course during the Bergrennen Hemberg event, when, just after crossing the finish line, the car ran off the road. The car tumbled down the hill and eventually came to rest upside down from the road. Hammond remained conscious throughout and later described the feeling of "oh god, I'm going to die", as well as being "aware of tumbling – sky, ground, sky, ground, sky, ground, sky, ground." After being airlifted to hospital, Hammond was diagnosed with a tibial plateau fracture in his left knee and a plate and ten screws were surgically inserted. Jeremy Clarkson and James May, fellow presenters on ''
The Grand Tour ''The Grand Tour'' is a British motoring television series, created by Jeremy Clarkson, Richard Hammond, James May, and Andy Wilman, made for Amazon Studios, Amazon exclusively for its online streaming service Prime Video, Amazon Prime Video, ...
'' both witnessed the scene from afar, and, believing Hammond was dead, May recalled feeling a "blossoming, white-hot ball of pure, sickening horror forming in my heart" with Clarkson describing his "knees turning to jelly" at the sight of the crash. After the ordeal, the FIA allegedly ruled that the "show runs" Hammond and company were doing at the time of the accident violated the governing body's International Sporting Code and that the crash "acted against the interests of the sport." As a result, the Bergrennen Hemberg organizers were fined $5,138, on top of six-month license suspensions for race director Christian Muller and stewards Hermann Muller, Karl Marty, and Daniel Lenglet. In August of that year, Motorsport.com reported that the future of the entire event "is now in jeopardy." Despite the reports, the Bergrennen Hemberg would be held again in 2018, and driver registrations opening for 2019.


Personal life

Hammond has been married to Amanda "Mindy" Hammond (born Etheridge, born 6 July 1965), a columnist for the ''Daily Express'', since May 2002. They have two daughters. It was his friend Zogg Zieglar who first gave Hammond his nickname Hamster. After the couple announced the happy news of the impending birth of their first child, Zieglar's response was "And out will pop another hamster." The nickname stuck, especially on ''Top Gear'' due to his name and relatively small stature compared to May and Clarkson. His nickname was further reinforced when on three occasions in Top Gear (series 7), series 7, he ate cardboard, mimicking hamster-like behaviour. Hammond is known for owning a large number of animals on Bollitree farm including several horses, dogs, cats, chickens, ducks, sheep, and a peacock. He and his family adopted TG, the official '' Top Gear'' dog, after it became apparent that the labradoodle was afraid of cars. The dog died aged 11 in January 2017. Hammond plays bass guitar, on which he accompanied the other ''Top Gear'' presenters when they performed alongside Justin Hawkins on ''Top Gear of the Pops'' for Comic Relief in 2007. He likes to ride his bicycle, scooter, or motorbike in cities, for which he is mocked mercilessly by fellow presenter
Jeremy Clarkson Jeremy Charles Robert Clarkson (born 11 April 1960) is an English broadcaster, journalist and writer who specialises in motoring. He is best known for the motoring programmes '' Top Gear'' and ''The Grand Tour ''The Grand Tour'' is a Bri ...

Jeremy Clarkson
. During the news segment of Top Gear: US Special, ''Top Gear''s 2010 USA Road Trip special, Hammond openly expressed his dislike of the band Genesis (band), Genesis. This fact was later exploited by his co-presenters (particularly by Clarkson) in three special episodes: during the Top Gear: Middle East Special, Middle East Special, when they installed a secret second stereo unit in his Fiat Barchetta that only plays the band's ''Live over Europe 2007'' album; in the Top Gear: India Special, India Special, Clarkson played the same song used in the previous special (albeit the ''Seconds Out'' version) through the megaphone mounted in his Jaguar XJS, despite Hammond driving a different car (a Mini Cooper Sport). In the 2013 Africa Special, Clarkson once again played Genesis in an attempt to get Hammond to let him pass. In 2007, Hammond went to Africa on a Top Gear: Botswana Special, ''Top Gear'' special across Botswana, with his choice of car being a 1963 Opel Kadett A, Opel Kadett, which he subsequently named Oliver. A week after the special was aired, Hammond announced during the news section that he had shipped Oliver back to the UK, where it was restored by a team from ''Practical Classics'' magazine. Oliver features on Hammond's children's science television show ''Richard Hammond's Blast Lab'' and in another episode of ''Top Gear'' as a kind of "Hill-holder" in the trailer truck challenge (after it acquired the fake personal plate "OLI V3R"). Oliver is also mentioned in Hammond's second autobiography ''As You Do''. In 2010, Hammond was the president of the 31st Herefordshire Country Fair held at Hampton Court in Hope under Dinmore. His involvement caused unprecedented attendance with "nearly 15,000 people" drawn to the event to meet the presenter. In March 2012, Hammond passed his B206 LST helicopter licence and has since owned a Robinson R44 Raven II helicopter. In September 2018, his wife reported that she and Richard, along with their fifteen-year-old daughter, had been burgled while sleeping at a holiday villa in Saint-Tropez, speculating that they might have been rendered unconscious by noxious gas.


Residences

The Hammond family lives in a mock castle in Herefordshire and also has an apartment in London. In an interview with ''The Sunday Times'' in February 2008, it was reported that Hammond had moved briefly from Gloucestershire to Buckinghamshire, then back again, because he missed the country life. In October 2012, it was reported he had spent over £2 million buying Bollitree Castle which is situated near Weston under Penyard, Ross-on-Wye. It has been rumoured he has also bought a large house in the small town of Wantage, Oxfordshire.


Vehicle ownership


Cars

Hammond currently owns or has owned many different cars including: * 1931 Lagonda 2-litre Supercharged. * 1942 Ford GPW * 1962 Jaguar E-Type Roadster Mk1 * 1963 Opel Kadett, a car he bought for ''Top Gear's'' Botswana special. He named the car Oliver (Top Gear), Oliver and had it shipped from Botswana to the UK. * 1968 Ford Mustang (first generation), Ford Mustang GT 390 in Highland Green. * 1969 Porsche 911T. * 1972 MG_MGB#GT, MGB GT * 1979 MG Midget * 1987 Land Rover Defender-110, known as "Buster" which he spent over £70,000 rebuilding in 2008. * 1999 Lotus Esprit, Lotus Esprit 350 Sport * 2016 Ford Mustang convertible in white with black Shelby stripes, which he bought as a Christmas present for his wife. * Bentley S1 * Land Rover 110 Station Wagon, which was christened "Wallycar" by his eldest daughter and has been owned by him twice. * Land Rover Discovery 4 SDV6 HSE *Land Rover Defender * Jaguar XK120 currently undergoing restoration. * Jaguar XK150 currently undergoing restoration. Cars no longer owned by Hammond: * 1969 Dodge Charger (B-body), Dodge Charger R/T * 1976 Toyota Corolla liftback, which was his first car. * 1982 Porsche 911 classic, Porsche 911 SC (sold in the mid-2000s) * 1985 Land Rover Range Rover Classic which he later sold. * 1994 BMW 8 Series (E31), BMW 850Ci, which was used to race against Clarkson's Mercedes-Benz CL-Class (C215), Mercedes CL600, which they both bought on ''Top Gear'' to prove that one could purchase second-hand V12 engine, V12 cars which were a better buy than the Nissan Pixo (Britain's cheapest new car at the time) for less money. He sold this after a week on the challenge. * 1994 Porsche 928, purchased in 2004 for the purpose of daily driving. He later sold the car. * 1996 Fiat Barchetta, which he revealed that he had previously owned in the Middle East Special when explaining his choice of the Barchetta for the challenge. * 1997 Ferrari 550 Maranello, which he mentioned in ''Top Gear'' as the car he regretted selling. * 2006 Porsche 997, Porsche 911 (997) Carrera S. He sold it in 2013 following the announcement of the GT3. * 2010 Fiat 500 (2007), Fiat 500C TwinAir, which he discussed purchasing during Top Gear (series 18), Series 18 of ''Top Gear''. It is unknown when he sold it. * 2008 Dodge Challenger, Dodge Challenger SRT-8 which was purchased in the United States on a Series 12 episode of ''Top Gear.'' Later he sold it. * 2009 Aston Martin DBS V12, Aston Martin DBS Volante, which he purchased for £175,000. Hammond later sold the car. * 2009 Morgan Aeromax, in which he was involved in a car accident on 9 August 2009. He later sold it. * 2009 Lamborghini Gallardo#LP 560-4 Spyder, Lamborghini Gallardo LP560-4 Spyder which he purchased in 2010. He later sold it in 2012. * 2013 Porsche 911 GT3, which he discussed purchasing during Top Gear (series 21), Series 21 of ''Top Gear''. This car was subsequently recalled because of multiple reports of the cars catching fire and he sold it in 2016. * 2015 Porsche 911 GT3#991.1 GT3 RS, Porsche 911 GT3 RS, which he purchased on 17 April 2016. * 2020 Morgan Plus Six The car was later destroyed in a flood on Christmas Eve and subsequently crushed. * Volkswagen Type 2, VW camper van, which was customised in pink for his daughters.


Motorcycles

Hammond is a keen motorcyclist, having ridden for over 30 years. He currently owns or has owned many different motorcycles including: *1925 Sunbeam Model A, with an asthmatic side-valve 350cc single-cylinder engine, a hand-shift three-speed gearbox, a manual oil pump, acetylene gas lights and no milometer *1927 Sunbeam Model 2 *1935 Indian Motocycle Manufacturing Company, Indian *1947 Harley Davidson *1951 BMW R51, with a 600cc conversion, a Hoske tank and cut down mudguards *1959 Norton Dominator *1961 Triumph Bonneville T120C *1962 Triumph Bonneville *1970s Moto Guzzi V7 Sport *1974 Kawasaki Z900 *1976 BMW R90S, which is an "[i]rresistible low mileage example of BMWs first attempt at a sportsbike. The tank's been repainted, but the rest is original." *1976 Honda Gold Wing *1976 Kawasaki Z900, which was a 40th birthday present from his wife *1976 Moto Guzzi Le Mans (Mk1). "I've always wanted a Guzzi. They've got a tractor-like quality. This one is fitted with a period accessory fairing from Apple Motorcycles", Hammond said in an interview for ''Bike Magazine''. *1976 Yamaha FS-1E *1981 BMW R100RT, which Hammond bought "when some friends, including James May, started a thing called the Crap Motorcycle Camping Club of GB. [...] It's called Eric, after the previous owner and it's done 105,000 miles". *1988 BMW R100GS *1990 BMW K1, with a unique BMW Motorsport inspired paintjob *1990 BMW K100RS, which has a batch painted by Dream Machine in BMW Motorsport colours to celebrate Nick Jeffries finishing 8th in the 1984 Production TT on one *1991 Suzuki GSX-R1100. In an interview for ''Bike Magazine'' in 2014, Hammond stated: "When I was a kid I saw a GSX-R 1100 being filled up in a petrol station. I thought it was amazing. I know this isn't the collectable slab-sided one, but I don't care." *1992 Kawasaki KR1-S *1992 Kawasaki ZXR750. In a ''Bike Magazine'' interview, Richard stated: "I just love the hoses from the fairing ducts to the engine. I remember seeing these in Mick Staiano Motorcycles in Harrogate and dreaming of owning one." *1998 Ducati 916 SPS Fogarty Replica *2012 BMW R1200RT, which is according to Richard "[t]he best bike in the world." In 2014, he told ''Bike Magazine'': "I love to hustle on the RT. It's done 8000 commuting miles and is used as a tool." *2014 Norton Commando 961 SE *Bimota SB8R *Bimota YB9 *Brough Superior SS80 period race replica *Brough Superior SS100 *Ducati 900 Super Sport Desmo *Honda SS50. In 2014, Richard told ''Bike Magazine'' that the Honda had been disassembled and was being restored by his daughter. *Moto Guzzi Daytona 1000 *Suzuki GS1000 *Vespa GTS 300 Super Sport scooter *Vincent Black Shadow *Yamaha Virago Motorcycles no longer owned by Hammond: *BMW R1150GS *Honda CBR1000F *Honda CBX750F *Honda MTX50, which was his first motorcycle. *Honda NSR125R *Honda XL100 *Kawasaki GP100 *Kawasaki ZZR600 *Suzuki GSX-R750WP


Other vehicles

Furthermore, Hammond owns or has owned the following vehicles: *2005 Robinson R44 Raven II helicopter *List of John Deere tractors, John Deere 6210 SE tractor


Charity work

Hammond is an ambassador of UK charity for children with brain injury and neuro-disability The Children's Trust. He opened its Archie Norman building and supported the launch of its website providing information to parents on acquired brain injury, the Brain Injury Hub. On 29 September 2013, terminally-ill eight-year-old Emilia Palmer was driven by Hammond in a pink Lamborghini Aventador Roadster (newly repainted for the occasion). Hammond flew his Robinson R44 helicopter, G-OHAM, to Shobdon Aerodrome, then picked Palmer up from her home in Kimbolton, Herefordshire and drove her back to the airport for a high-speed run on the main runway. The event was arranged at short notice by Rays of Sunshine.


Controversies

Hammond's comments and actions have sometimes resulted in complaints from viewers, LGBT rights charities, and foreign diplomats. During the second episode of series sixteen of ''Top Gear'', Hammond suggested that no one would ever want to own a Mexican car, since cars are supposed to reflect national characteristics and so a Mexican car would be "lazy, feckless, flatulent, overweight, leaning against a fence, asleep, looking at a cactus with a blanket with a hole in the middle on as a coat." Hammond finished with the remark "I'm sorry, but can you imagine waking up and remembering you're Mexican?!" The comments prompted Embassy of Mexico, London, Mexico's ambassador in London, Eduardo Medina-Mora Icaza, to lodge an official complaint to the BBC. Demanding an apology from the BBC, the ambassador stated: "These offensive, xenophobic and humiliating remarks only serve to reinforce negative stereotypes and perpetuate prejudice against Mexico and its people." The BBC defended the broadcast of this segment on the grounds that such national stereotyping was a "robust part" of traditional British humour.


Alleged homophobia

In December 2016, in reference to the interior styling of a Volvo S90 co-presenter Clarkson joked that "the only problem is that in one of those, you couldn't enjoy a chocolate Magnum (ice cream), Magnum ice cream" – to which Hammond responded: "It's all right, I don't eat ice cream. It's something to do with being straight." The joke was written as a reference to a well-known advertisement in Finland (where that episode of ''The Grand Tour'' was filmed); however, LGBT rights campaigner Peter Tatchell accused Hammond of "pandering to prejudice", adding that "it's a perverse world when everyday pleasures like ice cream becomes the butt of homophobic innuendo." A spokesperson for UK LGBT rights charity Stonewall (charity), Stonewall stated that "Hammond's choice of words were not just ridiculous, but chosen purposefully to mock and belittle." A year later, in an interview with ''The Times'', Hammond stated: "Look, anyone who knows me knows I wasn’t being serious, that I’m not homophobic. Love is love, whatever the sex of the two people in love... It may be because I live in a hideously safe and contained middle-class world, where a person’s sexuality is not an issue". In an interview with ''Newsweek, Newsweek Today'', Hammond denied making homophobic comments, and refused to apologise for the remarks: "I entirely reject any criticism of me being anti-gay. That's just not the case."


Filmography


Television


Video games


Television advertisements


Awards and honours


Bibliography

Car and motorcycle books * * * * Children's books * * * Biographies * * * *


Britcar 24 Hour results


References


External links

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Donations to Yorkshire Air Ambulance double as a result of their life-saving rescue of Richard Hammond

Q&A
– The Guardian – 2009-1-3. Hammond questions about himself. Retrieved 2009-6-29. {{DEFAULTSORT:Hammond, Richard 1969 births Living people People from Solihull People educated at Solihull School People educated at Ripon Grammar School English autobiographers English children's writers English broadcasters English male journalists English non-fiction writers English male non-fiction writers English radio DJs English science writers English television presenters British motoring journalists People with traumatic brain injuries BBC television presenters Top Gear people Britcar 24-hour drivers