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Top Gear: Series 10, Episode 4 – Botswana Special

  • Botswana Special: The boys go to Botswana and buy a car for less than £1500 for a 1,000 mile challenge.

Episode Guide

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Challenge 1: Buy a used car for up to £1500. Mocking the use of “Chelsea Tractors” for delivering children to school and driving up leafy lanes, rules for the challenge stipulate that the car purchased to cross the spine of Africa has to be two wheel drive, and not designed in any way for off-road use. Clarkson buys a 1981 Lancia Beta Coupe, May a 1985 Mercedes-Benz 230E and Hammond a 1963 Opel Kadett, which he nicknames “Oliver”. Starting from the Botswana-Zimbabwe border, they must drive 1,000 miles (1,600 km) to the Namibian border. If at any time a presenter’s car breaks down and cannot be restarted, he must complete the journey in a Volkswagen Beetle. While the Beetle turns out to be a suitable vehicle for such a challenge, the Beetle is the presenters’ collective least favourite car of all time.

Challenge 2: Cross the Makgadikgadi Pan successfully. The first section of the Makgadikgadi salt pan has a thin solid crust, under which lies a mud like substance underneath. Almost immediately, May and Clarkson’s cars begin to break through the crust. Desperate to shed weight, they strip down their cars to the basic shell, removing most of the interior trim and most of the panels. Hammond’s car is light enough to cross the salt pan shedding only his spare tyre and radiator grill. Clarkson’s car breaks down frequently, seemingly with electrical issues. For day two on the salt pans, dust becomes the problem, rather than the “gunk” underneath the salt crust. May and Clarkson cover their faces and re-dress to avoid choking on the dust, as each driver was now open to the elements due to having a bare shell. Hammond does not have to take such measures as he did not drastically modify his car earlier.

Shortly before beginning their trip onto the Makgadikgadi Pan, the Top Gear trio informally encountered Botswana’s Vice President, Seretse Ian Khama, who displayed no qualms regarding the trio’s journey across the flats. However, he did seem taken aback by the fact that the trio were attempting this in their old, used, two-wheel drive cars.

Challenge 3: Time trials round a rally course by “The Stig’s African cousin”. Oliver achieves a time of 1:12 before being beaten by May’s Mercedes-Benz with a 1:06. Clarkson’s car however, fails to start, so The Stig walks away.

Challenge 4: Cross the Okavango Delta; the presenters are told to make their cars “wild animal proof”. May is able to replace several Mercedes-Benz parts, due to the car’s popularity in Africa. Clarkson however cannot find any spare parts for his Lancia Beta so he jury-rigs new doors from soft drink cans, wood and corrugated iron, and attaches a megaphone. May paints “All Adders Are Puffs” on Oliver, and “Lite Bite Cafe” on Clarkson’s Lancia Beta. At the same time, Clarkson and Hammond hide a cowbell as well as several cuts of meat (including a cow’s head) inside May’s car, to attract wildlife.

Final results: Both Hammond and May made it to the border before Clarkson, who had suffered two more breakdowns during the final run. Although Hammond’s Opel had survived relatively intact (the only major repair being the car’s electricals), and May’s car had hardly broken down at all, both Clarkson and May, to Hammond’s horror, declared the winner to be the Volkswagen Beetle, which had completed the trip with no documented mishaps at all.

Similar to the 2007 Polar Challenge Special, the show’s credits included each crew member’s first name replaced with the words “Archbishop Desmond” (e.g. “Archbishop Desmond Clarkson, Archbishop Desmond Hammond and Archbishop Desmond May…”), in homage to Archbishop Desmond Tutu, Nobel Peace Prize winner in 1984.

Some say…

“Some say that he’s seen The Lion King 1,780 times, and that his second best friend is a Cape Buffalo. All we know is he’s not the Stig, but he is the Stig’s African Cousin.”

Music

00:58 – 01:11 – Tyler Bates – No Sleep Tonight
01:11 – 01:31 – Appliance – Slow Roller
01:31 – 01:44 – Ennio Morricone – Come Una Sentenza
01:42 – 02:05 – Ennio Morricone – L’Ultimo Rantolo
02:14 – 02:39 – Beth Orton – She Cries Your Name
03:02 – 03:13 – Beth Orton – She Cries Your Name
03:25 – 03:31 – Brian May – Montage/Main Title
03:31 – 03:37 – Brian May – Confrontation
04:07 – 05:35 – Ofo the Black Company – Love Is You
05:38 – 06:30 – Primal Scream – Wise Blood
06:31 – 07:16 – James Newton Howard – Fall of Freetown
07:18 – 07:46 – Amon Tobin – Easy Muffin
07:58 – 08:13 – Primal Scream – Vanishing Dub
08:22 – 08:36 – Tyler Bates – Fever Dream
08:36 – 09:03 – Primal Scream – Miss Lucifer (Bone to Bone Alec Empire Remix)
09:20 – 09:32 – Alan Silvestri – The Getaway
09:59 – 10:44 – James Newton Howard – Crossing the Bridge
10:44 – 11:41 – James Newton Howard – Main Title (Dreamcatcher) | Angelo Badalamenti – Diner
13:02 – 14:05 – James Newton Howard – Your Son is Gone
14:12 – 14:56 – Harald Kloser – The End…or Maybe Not
14:56 – 15:08 – Amon Tobin – Ten Piece Metric Wrench Set
15:07 – 15:23 – Tyler Bates – Immortals Battle
15:24 – 15:40 – Tyler Bates – The Agoge
15:51 – 17:15 – Alex Heffes – Press Conference
17:16 – 17:36 – John Powell – Nach Deutschland
17:41 – 18:16 – Tyler Bates – Cursed by Beauty
18:29 – 19:09 – Tyler Bates – Xerxes’ Tent
19:09 – 19:40 – Kawesa – Voice of the Forgotten
19:40 – 20:06 – Tyler Bates – Xerxes’ Tent
20:06 – 20:20 – Susumu Yokota – Azukiiro No Kaori
20:20 – 20:23 – Thomas Newman – Finn McGovern
20:22 – 20:39 – Anugama & Sebastiano – African Journey
20:39 – 20:57 – Angelo Badalamenti – Diner
21:01 – 21:22 – Angelo Badalamenti – Diner
21:43 – 22:17 – Tyler Bates – To Victory
22:19 – 22:34 – Thomas Newman – Finn McGovern
22:34 – 22:41 – Ennio Morricone – L’Ultimo Rantolo
22:51 – 22:55 – Ennio Morricone – L’Ultimo Rantolo
22:55 – 22:57 – Thomas Newman – Finn McGovern
22:56 – 23:06 – John Powell – Nach Deutschland
23:24 – 23:28 – Thomas Newman – Finn McGovern
23:26 – 23:34 – John Powell – Nach Deutschland
23:47 – 23:50 – Ennio Morricone – L’Ultimo Rantolo
23:49 – 24:09 – John Powell – Nach Deutschland
24:09 – 24:20 – Thomas Newman – Finn McGovern
24:20 – 25:02 – Ennio Morricone – L’Uomo Dell’Armonica
26:08 – 27:44 – Alex Heffes – End Credits (Touching the Void)
27:46 – 27:59 – Mark Mancina – Revenge
27:58 – 28:36 – Kasabian – The Doberman
28:36 – 29:04 – Wandel – Toko Momo
29:47 – 30:11 – Mark Mancina – Revenge
30:11 – 30:19 – Ennio Morricone – L’Ultimo Rantolo
30:39 – 30:51 – The Orb – Little Fluffy Clouds (Heavyweight Dub)
30:54 – 31:32 – Bertrand Burgalat – Kim
31:46 – 32:24 – Gert Wilden & Orchestra – Schulmaedchen Report (Title Theme)
32:42 – 33:08 – Ennio Morricone – L’Ultimo Rantolo
33:55 – 34:58 – Danny Elfman – Main Title Deconstruction (Planet of the Apes)
34:58 – 35:28 – Tyler Bates – No Sleep Tonight
36:57 – 37:02 – Alan Silvestri – The Getaway
37:48 – 38:09 – Brian May – Montage/Main Title
39:19 – 39:40 – Kinesthesia – Triachus (Aphex Twin Mix)
39:56 – 41:12 – Brian May – Break Out
41:23 – 41:55 – Paul Oakenfold – Rule the Planet Remix
41:58 – 42:29 – U.N.K.L.E – Safe in Mind (Instrumental)
42:38 – 43:07 – Tan Dun – Night Fight
43:12 – 43:55 – The Orb – Little Fluffy Clouds (Heavyweight Dub)
45:10 – 45:33 – Classics IV – Spooky
46:37 – 47:25 – Tyler Bates – The Wolf
47:29 – 48:05 – Tyler Bates – The Wolf
48:42 – 49:37 – Tyler Bates – A God King Bleeds
49:52 – 50:17 – The Sabres of Paradise – R.S.D.
50:17 – 50:39 – Brian May – Confrontation
51:43 – 51:54 – Eric Carmen – All By Myself
51:59 – 52:06 – R.E.M. – Everybody Hurts
52:08 – 52:14 – Elton John – Sorry Seems to be the Hardest Word
52:21 – 52:53 – Tyler Bates – Flight in the Shade
52:53 – 53:02 – Tyler Bates – The Ephors
53:09 – 53:36 – Angelo Badalamenti – The Beach Theme (Mythical Waters)
53:42 – 54:31 – Tyler Bates – The Hot Gates
54:32 – 54:37 – Ennio Morricone – Come Una Sentenza
54:51 – 55:04 – Ennio Morricone – L’Ultimo Rantolo
55:11 – 55:36 – Ennio Morricone – L’Uomo Dell’Armonica
55:38 – 55:39 – Tyler Bates – To Victory
55:39 – 56:06 – Ofo the Black Company – Love Is You
56:09 – 56:10 – Tyler Bates – The Hot Gates
56:10 – 56:19 – Ennio Morricone – L’Ultimo Rantolo
56:31 – 56:41 – Ofo the Black Company – Love Is You
56:45 – 57:06 – Ofo the Black Company – Love Is You
57:08 – 57:25 – Ennio Morricone – Nascita Di Una Citta
57:36 – 57:43 – Thomas Newman – Finn McGovern
57:44 – 57:55 – Ennio Morricone – L’Uomo Dell’Armonica
57:55 – 57:57 – Tyler Bates – The Hot Gates
57:58 – 58:13 – Bent – Invisible Pedestrian
58:32 – 58:58 – Angelo Badalamenti – The Beach Theme (Mythical Waters)
58:58 – 59:04 – Thomas Newman – Finn McGovern

Screenshots

Rating: 8.5/10. From 32 votes.
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4 comments

jacquelyn chen October 22, 2014 at 4:42 pm

Thank you! This is an extra enjoyable episode.

Reply
Sean McKellar November 15, 2014 at 7:03 am

I am glad you enjoyed it!

Reply
Henry July 6, 2016 at 1:28 pm

What is the music, when Hammond returns with “Oliver”?

Reply
chris October 17, 2016 at 6:39 am

I’ve been trying to find that music, it seems that on some editions of the episode the music is the main title theme from the movie ‘The Beach’ but I have been searching for the other piece that has been used. Have you managed to find it?

Reply

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