Former Formula 1 driver David Coulthard has defended Top Gear over anger about the Cenotaph stunt, during which Matt LeBlanc and rally driver Ken Block were seen filming the BBC2 show near the Westminster war memorial.
Coulthard, who recently revealed that he’d turned down a Top Gear presenting job to host Channel 4’s F1 coverage, said that the stunt had been performed by two Americans who may not have been “sensitive” to the memorial.
Speaking at the Royal Television Society programme awards on Tuesday, Coulthard, who took home the Sports Presenter award, said that there had probably been a cultural misunderstanding.
“I think it was obviously a mistake,” he said, “and I haven’t seen all the breakdown, but maybe having two Americans in the car who wouldn’t be as sensitive to occasion and logistics is my first benefit of the doubt. If I’d been in the car, we should definitely know better. But I live in a foreign country, so there’s plenty of times I go: ‘I’m sorry, I didn’t know that.’
“It was clear to me there was a very quick response, a very clear apology and I think that’s all you can do. It shouldn’t have happened, but it did. You move on.”