Chris Evans, ITV

Chris Evans is to lead the search for co-hosts to join him on Top Gear.

It was confirmed on Tuesday that the Radio 2 breakfast show DJ will lead an all new Top Gear. The BBC announced that Evans has signed a three-year deal which had been previously denied by the corporation and Evans himself. Chris replaces Jeremy Clarkson after the BBC decided not to renew his contract following an incident with a producer earlier this year. It is understood that James May and Richard Hammond have also departed the show.

Speaking on his breakfast show on Wednesday, Chris Evans announced open auditions to find new co-hosts and that one would be female. However he clarified on Thursday that there may not be a female co-host but there would “definitely be a female presence” on the new Top Gear. Jeremy Clarkson was one of the first people to congratulate Chris Evans on his new appointment. Evans will continue to host his popular breakfast show on BBC Radio 2.

Evans says that he will “respect” what has gone before him and promises to move Top Gear forward.

“His knowledge of and passion for cars are well-known and combined with his sheer inventiveness and cheeky unpredictability he is the perfect choice to take our much-loved show into the future.” – Controller of BBC Two, Kim Shillinglaw

Production on the new Top Gear is expected to begin in the next few weeks although no air date has been set for its return.

The final episode to feature Clarkson, Hammond and May together will air during a 75-minute special to air on Sunday 28 June at 8.000pm on BBC Two.

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