Abu Dhabi, UAETuesday 22 September 2020

‘Big’ in Dubai: ex-'Top Gear' presenter Richard Hammond hangs off Burj Khalifa in new TV show

Hammond promises to cover every metre of the tower, from the fountain at the base, to the narrow pinnacle at the top of the world’s tallest lightning conductor

Former Top Gear presenter Richard Hammond is no stranger to Dubai, having already taken a Porsche 918 Spyder round town for that show in 2014, and returned to parade through Dubai Mall in a tank for his follow up series, Amazon’s The Grand Tour .

Now the popular presenter is set to return to the UAE in his latest series, Big, which premieres on Discovery Channel at 10pm this evening. The show looks at some of the world’s biggest structures, machines, and feats of engineering. So it’s probably no great surprise to find the Burj Khalifa, the world’s tallest building, on the show’s “to do” list.

Hammond promises that in the new show, he won’t only show us these impressive feats of human endeavour (and let’s face it if you’ve ever been to Dubai you’ve already seen the 828m colossus that is the Burj as it is visible from almost everywhere), but to “get hands on” by driving them, operating them or, in the case of the Burj, climbing it. Or at least joining the intrepid group of window cleaners who spend their days in a basket keeping its 100,000+ square metres of glass clean year-round.

The star also promises to cover every metre of the tower, from the (world’s biggest, naturally) fountain at the base, to the narrow pinnacle at the top of the world’s tallest lightning conductor, and to explain how such a remarkable structure could ever even exist on the shifting sands of the UAE’s landscape.

“I love engineering and the science behind it, and the bigger the better. It’s going to be big,” said Hammond in a statement.

At only 1.68 metres in height, it’s fair to assume that most things may appear relatively large to the car-loving celeb. But with other notable, and sizeable, feats of engineering such as the world’s biggest jet engine and the world’s biggest car production line on the schedule for the show, even his famously tall former co-presenter Jeremy Clarkson (1.96m) would have to admit that “The Hamster” is in some sizeable territory with Big.

Check out our gallery of Hammond and his team on the 2019 Dubai shoot for the show above.

'Big' premieres Thursday, February 6 at 10pm UAE on Discovery Channel (OSN channel 500)

Updated: February 6, 2020 11:30 AM

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