Top Yacht logo & post advert theme
INT: Top Yacht studio, usual three presenters, studio audience, various boats hanging behind etc
Clarkson: We're back! Yes it's time for a new series of Top Yacht!
Clarkson (waving in his hand a piece of paper): And we start with a letter from a viewer, an American - apparently they do a bit of sailing over there - who calls himself Tillerman. And he asks why do we muck around in big boats rather than the wonderful Laser? Haven't we ever heard of the concept that less is more?
Camera viewpoint lowers so Clarkson at 6 foot 6 inches towers above the viewer.
Clarkson: This is clearly complete bollocks. And I mean a Laser, the designers obviously hadn't realised that people grow up
May: And I agreed - after all what good is a boat that's too small for a kettle to make a nice cup of tea! So if it had been up to us the letter would have been crumpled up into a ball so we could play a quick game of football.
Hammond: But luckily it wasn't opened by these two oversized morons but by me! I've always liked the Laser as its clearly the right size and terrific fun to sail. But how to show these two sceptics there is more to it than meets the eye? So I had this idea, a challenge: starting, say, from Putney London, how far could we sail a Laser?
Clarkson: So what do we think? From Putney how far could we sail a Laser?
Voice from the audience: Putney!
Clarkson: Oh very funny! Ok, hands up all those that think we could get to Tower Bridge?
Most of the audience put their hands up.
May: Slightly worried that not everyone thinks we could even sail a Laser from Putney to Tower Bridge!
Clarkson: Ok, how about a bit further, say Greenwich, that's 11 nautical miles?
Some of the audience put hands down.
May: What about the Tilbury Docks, that's nearly thirty nautical miles and pretty much out to sea?
All of the audience now have put their hands down.
The three look at each other smirking.
Clarkson: Go on, you tell them.
Hammond: Well I decided that in true Top Yacht tradition we should be really ambitious and suggested New York.
Gasps, a few laughs, then silence from the audience.
May: You might think he's joking, because we certainly did, but then he explained.
Hammond: The key bit was that I asked how far we could sail the Laser - we, us three. If we took it in turns and had something a bit like a watch system, could we together sail this little boat across the wide Atlantic?
Clarkson: Of course at this point the health and safety idiots got involved and this being the BBC we couldn't just set them on fire or something and ignore all that stupid stuff about the dangers of sailing a one person dinghy in a gale at night.
May: To keep them happy, as well as a watch system we were allowed to go to the nearest land and pull the Laser up the beach as long as we launched at the same point.
Clarkson: Then there was the issue that we of course are very busy people with supermarkets to open, adverts to do voice overs for, that sort of thing. So for most of the actual sailing we'd need stand-ins to take the place of us three.
May: And the three we got were Aqua Stig, Ben Ainslie and Anna Tunnicliffe, as they sort of know a thing or two about Lasers. But the key offshore legs would be up to us.
Hammond: So there you, the Top Yacht sail a Laser across the Atlantic challenge!
Advert break. Are they mad? Could you sail a Laser across the Atlantic? Could those three? Keep watching to find out the answer....