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Jeremy Clarkson breaks his silence over his Top Gear sacking
Jeremy Clarkson has claimed there are some 'dreadful' people working at the BBC but admitted the fracas which led to his sacking was his 'own silly fault'.
Appearing on the Chris Evans Breakfast Show on BBC Radio 2, Clarkson expressed remorse at the events which led to him losing his role as the main presenter on the motoring show after more than a decade at its helm.
While lashing out at his former employer, claiming there were some 'dreadful' people working for the Corporation, he also said there were some 'talented, brilliant people' and admitted he was open to one day returning to work for them.
The comments were the first interview he has given - and marked a return to the BBC - since he was sacked for punching producer Oisin Tymon in a row over a hot dinner during filming.
He told the show, hosted by Evans: "It was my own silly fault so I can hardly complain.
"I was at the BBC for 27 years, and did the current incarnation of Top Gear for 12, and it was very much my baby.
"I absolutely adored it and worked all the time on it, all through the night, and I paid attention to every tiny little bit of it.
"And then suddenly you're not asked to do that any more, and you do feel that there is a big hole which does need to be filled.'
Clarkson added he was 'very sad' to leave Top Gear and he has 'absolutely no idea' what the future will hold in terms of his next broadcasting role.
But after expressing remorse at the loss of his presenting gig, he took one final swipe at his former bosses, saying: "There are some dreadful people at the BBC but some incredibly talented, brilliant people."
Clarkson told the show he could work with the BBC again claiming that he was not sacked, but his contract simply not renewed.
"It’s a great organisation, I’m never going to complain about it," he said.
Clarkson was suspended in early March for punching Mr Tymon in the face when he was offered a plate of cold cuts instead of steak and chips after a long day of filming.
The BBC's internal investigation into the incident found Clarkson spent 20 minutes verbally abusing the producer in a luxury North Yorkshire hotel before launching a 30-second physical assault that led to another member of staff dragging him away.
Following the completion of the BBC's report, North Yorkshire Police waded into the row.
However, the probe was dropped when Mr Tymon said he did not want to press further charges. Clarkson has repeatedly apologised to Mr Tymon both in public and privately.
Mr Tymon was struck with such force at the North Yorkshire Hotel that he had to visit an A&E. Two weeks later, Lord Hall, the Director General of the BBC, announced it was with 'great regret' that Clarkson would be sacked.
Clarkson also revealed he is set to drive around the Top Gear track one last time for charity and admitted it will be 'emotional'.
At the end of the interview, Clarkson, who had posed for selfies with fans, left Broadcasting House with Evans in the passenger seat of the DJ's red Ferrari.
While admitting some 'dreadful people' worked for the BBC, he refused to twist the knife, stating: 'It's a great organisation, I'm never going to complain about it.'
He said that the final Top Gear shows featuring the trio, which were not broadcast earlier this year following Clarkson's suspension, were being edited and would be shown.
But he suggested he might not be in them, adding there will be an 'actual elephant in the room'.
Evans played Clarkson a recording of the star speaking a year ago, when he said that if he did ever lose his Top Gear job he could do something else, even be a milkman.
But the star said: 'I'm not going to be a milkman, that's for d*** sure, not with those early starts. That was hypothetical, now it's more sort of real.'
He said it could be weeks, months or even a year before he could say what he will be doing with his future.
Clarkson, Richard Hammond and James May are believed to be negotiating with a streaming service like Netflix or Amazon. But Clarkson only said he had just been 'listening' to offers from broadcasters.
He also spoke about his live show with James May and Richard Hammond, which starts tomorrow in Belfast. The trio flew to Belfast last night.
Clarkson said he was 'extremely well' and added: 'It's amazing being unemployed. You get busier than if you actually have a job.'
He said he was looking forward to 'six months clowning around doing live shows' but called it 'the most badly organised world tour in history'.
'Somebody needs an atlas, somebody has done it by alphabet ... I’m going to spend most of the next six months with James, who’s extremely smelly, and Richard on an aeroplane,' he said.
The BBC plans to relaunch Top Gear with new presenters. Evans was linked to the reboot but has ruled himself out.
He joked that the three presenters were working on a flower-arranging show, adding: 'It was very sudden (leaving Top Gear) and you’d be a fool to jump out there.'
Clarkson said he joined the BBC when it was 'black and white' and everyone 'talked fast' and added: 'You emerge after 27 years ... in the meantime I’m just getting really good at tennis.'
Reaction on Twitter was varied - many were disappointed to see him given air time, while others welcomed his return to broadcasting