Moment Freddie Flintoff smashed pick-up into market stall while racing his Top Gear co-hosts

This is the moment Freddie Flintoff smashed a pick-up truck into a market stall while racing his Top Gear co-hosts around a town centre.

The former cricketer was racing Paddy McGuinness and Chris Harris during filming for the 22nd series of Top Gear.

But after seemingly misjudging a bend he smashed the retro car straight through a buffer of straw bales and into an empty market stall in Mansfield on Sunday.

Onlookers said red-faced Flintoff escaped the customised mid-90s Subaru MV pickup truck without any injuries.

A witness, who captured the footage said: “Reactions were mixed. Some people laughed, others were in a slight shock.”

The footage, captured at 9.50am, shows the trio racing against each other around Mansfield Town Centre whilst testing the pros and cons of electric cars.

A council spokesperson confirmed Flintoff was driving the car which crashed.

Executive mayor of Mansfield, Kate Allsop, said the team arrived at 3am and had left by 11am.

She joked they were going to name the market stall after the TV host.

Mansfield District Council spokesman, said: “We can confirm that BBC Top Gear presenters Chris Harris, Freddie Flintoff and Paddy McGuinness were in Mansfield filming for an episode of the hit BBC Two show.

“We were sworn to secrecy by the BBC because of concerns about safety if a large crowd had turned up to watch.

“Freddie slightly lost control and crashed into an empty market stall – nobody was hurt.

“This shows the most important thing when holding a driving event like this in a town centre is ensuring people are safe, which is why this couldn’t be publicised.

“There was plenty of action and the smell of burning tyres as seven cars did loops around the inner ring road.

“There was a risk that filming wouldn’t have gone ahead if word had got out in advance.

“This was an offer we couldn’t refuse!”

Writing of Twitter, Amelia Radford said: “As if they were filming Top Gear in Mansfield today and didn’t say anything about it. Well gutted, I would have gone to see Paddy McGuinness.”

Dee Powell, added: “Great just found out that Paddy McGuinness was in Mansfield filming BBC Top Gear, great another opportunity missed!!”

The stunt was part of the new series – the first one to be hosted by Freddie Flintoff and Paddy McGuinness since former host Matt LeBlanc last year.

by Richard Percival

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