Top Gear host Chris Evans says he wants to be more 'spiky' and 'edgy' in his work

Broadcaster says hosting his BBC Radio 2 show is like 'flying an Airbus 380' rather than a 'Spitfire'

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The Independent Online

The new host of Top Gear Chris Evans has spoken of wanting to be more "spiky" and "edgy" in his work as he described his job hosting BBC Radio 2's breakfast show as like "flying an Airbus 380" rather than a "Spitfire".

Asked about his heavy workload in the months ahead, Evans told a radio industry conference that he would be dropping his Channel 4 show TGI Friday as he prepares for the launch of Top Gear in May next year. He said he had recorded the first two of the final run of the long-running Channel 4 show but "this is the long goodbye because I am not allowed to do any more TGI Fridays."

Evans suggested that his time commitments on Top Gear would not be as draining as some have suggested. "The thing about Top Gear is a lot of it is pre-filmed," he said.

The presenter, whose successes and failures have been played out in the public eye over a 30-year career, said he had "fallen back in love with life" and agreed that "warmth" was a "hugely important" part of his broadcasting. But the former host of The Big Breakfast admitted to a craving for taking more risks.

"I would love to be spiky, I would love to be a bit more edgy, I would love to be all those different kinds of things sometimes," he said. "But that is not my job at the moment I am not flying a Spitfire, I am flying an Airbus 380, and we can't do loop-the-loops, we have got to get everybody across safely and happily." 

Evans said that he had curtailed his once notorious party lifestyle. "It's different now, it will be a nice meal and a couple of bottles of wine. I don't drink in the week now," he told the Radio Festival Showcase, taking place at the British Library in London. 

Hosting the Radio 2 breakfast show, the most popular programme on British radio, was "like having the best bath ever", he said. "When I get on the radio I do feel that it's three hours away from the real world."

Evans told the audience that he had consciously avoided spending time in America because he feared it would change his style. "For ages and ages I didn't go to America because I didn't want to be influenced. Southern California is fantastically creative but a lot of my friends went there early in their careers and they were full of these Americanisms. They became 'Yankified' and I didn't want to do that."