“Top Gear” host Richard Hammond has spoken out about the firing of his cohort Jeremy Clarkson, calling Clarkson’s ouster “a sad end to an era.”
Hammond took to Twitter on Wednesday after the BBC decided not to renew Clarkson’s contract following an internal investigation, saying he was “gutted” by the decision.
Gutted at such a sad end to an era. We're all three of us idiots in our different ways but it's been an incredible ride together.
— Richard Hammond (@RichardHammond) March 25, 2015
The BBC announced Wednesday that it had decided to drop Clarkson from the hit show.
“It is with great regret that I have told Jeremy Clarkson today that the BBC will not be renewing his contract,” BBC Director-General Tony Hall said in a statement. “It is not a decision I have taken lightly. I have done so only after a very careful consideration of the facts and after personally meeting both Jeremy and Oisin Tymon.”
According to the BBC’s investigation, Clarkson got into a physical and verbal altercation with producer Tymon on March 4.
“During the physical attack Oisin Tymon was struck, resulting in swelling and bleeding to his lip,” the report findings read. “The verbal abuse was sustained over a longer period, both at the time of the physical attack and subsequently.”
Clarkson was suspended from the show on March 10.
Hall noted on Wednesday that the BBC “must now look to renew Top Gear for 2016,” which he admitted “will be a big challenge and there is no point in pretending otherwise.”
Clarkson received widespread support from fans during his suspension, with one online petition that demanded his reinstatement amassing more than 500,000 signatures.