Shocking video footage has captured the moment Freddie Flintoff crashed a pick-up truck into a market stall while racing his Top Gear co-hosts around a town centre.
The former cricketer was competing against Paddy McGuinness and Chris Harris during filming for the 22nd series of Top Gear.
But after apparently 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 (10 Feb).
Onlookers said a red-faced Flintoff escaped the customised mid-90s Subaru MV pickup truck without any injuries.
‘Some people laughed – others were in shock’
A witness, who filmed 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.
Council were ‘sworn to secrecy’
“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,” said a Mansfield District Council spokeperson.
“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.”
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.