Jeremy Clarkson said Sabine Schmitz was ‘rude’ and ‘humiliated’ him in first Top Gear meet – Express

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Sabine Schmitz: Chris Harris remembers Top Gear colleague

Jeremy Clarkson was among the original and new Top Gear presenters, as well as other professionals who had been inspired by Sabine Schmitz’s success to pay tribute to the racing legend. When speaking about the first time he met the German professional motor racing driver, Jeremy said she “humiliated” him on the Nurburgring course and “was rude”. 

In 2004, Sabine was discovered by w whole new audience – Top Gear. 

Current presenter of the BBC motor show Freddie Flintoff spoke about “the first time he saw her on television”. 

He said: “[It was at the] Nurburgring with Clarkson. It was so good to watch.” 

An old clip from the first time Sabine was seen on the show was played and Jeremy was seen explaining: “The Top Gear test track has eight corners. Silverstone – which is a big Grand Prix circuit – has 12 corners. The Nurburgring has 147 corners.

“To help me get around this place, I have a teacher – Sabine Schmitz.” 

Jeremy was then seen reminiscing: “The first time she ever took me round the Nurburgring she just humiliated me and was rude.” 

READ MORE: Sabine Schmitz health: Sports star’s battle with cancer 

jeremy clarkson sabine schmitz bbc top gear

Jeremy Clarkson said Sabine Schmitz was ‘rude’ and ‘humiliated’ him in first Top Gear meet (Image: BBC)

“The first time she ever took me [to the track], she humiliated me and was rude,” Jeremy said. 

“She was extremely critical of me, hurtfully so. She had many observations to make about my driving and none of them were kind.” 

Jeremy was then seen in a car with Sabine experiencing the Nurburgring for the first time: “I have no idea where this track goes,” he commented. 

Sabine said: “At the moment it’s quite easy. Okay, and now accelerate, accelerate, accelerate…accelerate. It’s not really a corner,” she hit back at Jeremy whining. 

“It’s a huge corner!” He exclaimed which left Sabine laughing. 

Freddie continued to discuss the moment: “You could see him behind that wheel just getting smaller, and smaller, and smaller.” 

“This is my first lap,” Jeremy said in the old clip and Sabine replied: Don’t brake so much.” 

Watching the video back, Jeremy added: “She was extremely critical of me. I mean, hurtfully so.”

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Top Gear: Sabine did not hold back when it came to commenting on Jeremy’s driving (Image: BBC)

Sabine was then seen telling Jeremy to stop breaking before telling him “a girl overtook” him. 

“Do you know, I’m not feeling proud,” The Grand Tour presenter remarked. 

“She had many observations to make about my driving,” he continued to reminisce. “And none of them were kind.” 

“Is this the Carousel,” he asked Sabine when in the car and on the track. “Yes, now the Carousel is coming,” she replied and made the cross sign across from forehead and across her chest. 

“Turn in more later,” she suggested to Jeremy. “Your driving style is really funny.” 

“‘Your driving style is really funny.’” Richard Hammond then echoed from the clip. “I did laugh out loud when I saw that.” 

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Top Gear sabine schmitz bbc

Top Gear: Sabine said she could beat Jeremy’s time in a van (Image: BBC)

In response to her comment, Jeremy said: “I’m glad that I amused her, but I still don’t know why it was particularly funny.” 

Richard offered up an answer: “Maybe listen? Maybe she knows more than you.” 

The clip then continued with Jeremy asking Sabine: “Do you think I’m going to be able to get around [the race track] in ten minutes?” 

“No,” she bluntly replied. And Jeremy joked: “Don’t sugar-coat it like that. Tell me straight.” 

“You’re not 100 percent talent free, but 80 percent?” Sabine added. “80 percent talent free, right,” Jeremy reiterated. 

“Nevertheless,” Jeremy continued in his piece to camera. “She did coach me well enough, so that I did a sort of sub ten minute time.” 

Top Gear sabine schmitz bbc richard hammond

Top Gear: Sabine didn’t manage to uphold her bet (Image: BBC)

A clip was then shown of Jeremy attempting the sub-10 minute time and it occurred with one second to spare. 

“Nine minutes, 59 seconds,” he told Sabine with the dashboard clock in his hands to prove it. 

She replied: “I tell you something, I do can that lap time in a van. I show you what a really fast lap is.” 

After Sabine beat Jeremy in the same car on the same track with nine minutes, 12 seconds on the clock. 

After this, the challenge was set – could Sabine do the same lap in sub 10 minutes in a van like she boasted to Jeremy? 

A year later, Top Gear returned to the Nurburgring, this time the stakes were even higher. 

Richard joined Sabine in the van for the challenge and took the opportunity to ask her how many laps of the track she thinks she has done in her lifetime. 

“14,000 to 15,000,” she guessed. As for how many times she has crashed: “Many times, I can’t count.” 

The first time she attempted the track, the clock ticked over their ten minutes cut off and as a result, she threw Richard out of the vehicle to attempt it a second time without his weight. 

Unfortunately, she didn’t manage to uphold her brag. 

Those watching the tribute episode, took to Twitter to pay their respects. 

One said: “Nice seeing Clarkson, Hammond and May back on Top Gear again, even if in sad circumstances. Shows the affection that they had for Sabine Schmitz for them to come back to pay tribute #TopGear.” 

“What a touching tribute to Sabine Schmitz on #TopGear this evening. Such an inspiration for all aspiring racing drivers. Her legacy will live on,” someone chimed. 

A third wrote: “Beautiful tribute to Sabine by the Top Gear team. She was definitely a force to be reckoned with that won’t be forgotten. RIP #sabineschmitz #TopGear.” 

“A superb tribute to #sabineschmitz by the #BBC and the #TopGear team old and new. What an amazing woman, incredibly good at what she did, who lived for life, taken from us way too soon. RIP Sabine,” one more added. 

Sabine Schmitz top gear getty

Top Gear: Sabine was part of the show from the very beginning (Image: GETTY)

Sabine, known as the ‘Queen of the Nurburgring’ racetrack died aged 51. 

A statement read: “Sabine Schmitz (14.5.1969 – 16.3.2021) passed away yesterday (Tuesday) after her brave fight against cancer. 

“She was 51 years old. Klaus Abbelen and all relatives and friends are deeply saddened by the immeasurable loss.”

“The Nürburgring has lost its most famous female racing driver,” the Nürburgring’s official account added on social media.

“Sabine Schmitz passed away far too early after a long illness. We will miss her and her cheerful nature. Rest in peace Sabine!”

Sabine revealed she had been battling cancer since 2017. 

 

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