Justice for the brand “STIG”

A few weekends ago I was fortunate to witness in front of me what I can only call poetic justice for the BBC Top Gear’s brand “THE STIG”; I had been invited to Brands Hatch raceway for the final round of the British Touring Cars Championship (BTCC).

When I say the words justice let me explain, over the years I have become a fan of the BBC programme Top Gear, I have never been sure whether I love or hate front man Jeremy Clarkson but the format of the show I feel is very good.

One of the highlights each week is the mystery behind the tame racing driver “The White Stig”, I can remember back almost ten years to the first “Black Stig” then the change in format for the last seven years the white stig. Who was he! Was he a top driver! I suppose it was just the mystery of not knowing.

Based on the information given out about the original Black Stig being ex F1 driver Perry McCarthy the picture painted by Mr Clackson and his team was that the stig must be a top level racing driver. However in my view this was about to change when in August this year due to a High Court action it was announced who for the past seven years had been “The white stig” Mr Ben Collins.

The reason for the sad news was the announcement that in the autobiography about Ben Collins the racing driver life because he could not get hold of any extra money from the BBC for image rights of the BRAND STIG that he was going to kill the myth and reveal his identity as being the BBC “White Stig” for the past seven years.

So being that was the main makeup of his autobiography he would be moving on. So back to Brands Hatch the last round of the British Touring Cars where now as a racing driver Ben Collins was going to make his debut in a Airways BMW, also between races he would be having book signing sessions, Money, Money, Money me thinks. (If you take the seven years off the STIG out of his book there was not much left)

Even the race day commenter’s kept going on about Collins and The Stig, as a TV licence payer my view is any money earned from a fictional TV character should go to the BBC and not Ben Collins as all this extra publicity for Ben Collins based on the back of the brand “STIG”. Now the Justice part for me and hopefully the end of Mr Collins being able to earn of the back of the BBC brand The Stig as in my eye’s people in racing only remember winners and Mr Collins was not a winner that day as the photo shows and I do hope not in the future as well.

So Mr Ben Collins beached in the sand at the bottom of Paddock Hill Bend in the 3rd race and yet another DNF. In my eyes it was pure justice for all the STIG fans across the world as I now look forward to maybe the BBC new multi-coloured STIG could star in the next Top Gear series, but who knows.

However for me it was very ironic that The 2010 British Touring Car series was won by TV’s Channel Five programme The Fifth Gear presenter Jason Platio who also on winning the series became joint as the most successful touring driver of all time in the Touring Cars series with 60 wins to his name. Maybe and just maybe Jason Platio could become the next “STIG” at least everyone would know he was a true winner on the track and he wouldn’t sell his life story just based on a fictional character.

Let me know your thoughts!

Thanks Wayne.
wc@waynecollier.co.uk