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29th Jan 2021

Richard Hammond on why he built his own Jeremy Clarkson to keep him company on a desert island

Wil Jones

“Bald, leathery, peeling and out of shape: I shall call you Clarkson.”

If you were stuck on a desert island, two people who would probably be very good at helping you build shelter – and an escape vehicle – are The Grand Tour‘s Richard Hammond and MythBusters’ Tory Belleci.

And if you need proof, check out the new Amazon Prime show, The Great Escapists, which sees the duo stranded on a paradise island, trying to survive by building unwieldy contraptions.

We caught up with both Richard Hammond and Tory Belleci to talk about the show – and in particular, the old football that Hammond ends up naming Clarkson.


(In case you don’t get the joke, it is all a reference to Wilson the volleyball in Castaway with Tom Hanks).

The Great Escapists launches Friday 29th January on Amazon Prime Video.

The offical synopsis for the show reads:

Two men shipwrecked together on a desert island, THE GREAT ESCAPISTS is the story of Richard Hammond (The Grand Tour) and Tory Belleci (Mythbusters), (arguably) two of pop-science TV’s greatest minds, with nothing but their smarts and their scrap shipwreck for survival. Can they invent themselves off the island? Or will they be castaway forever? This is the engineering challenge of their lives, will they succeed and become THE GREAT ESCAPISTS?