Versatile Alex Riley waxes lyrical about his car obsession on the latest episode of Fuelling Around.
One half of The Car Years’ presenting team has spent a decent chunk of his career talking about and researching all things four wheels, as he explains to Dave Vitty and Jason Plato.
But what was the presenter, comedian, journalist and former Top Gear researcher’s first car and how did he get bitten by the motoring bug? The TV personality reveals all as the podcast’s fourth series continues to gather pace.
How did TV’s Alex Riley become obsessed with cars?
Before achieving notoriety on The One Show, the winner of 2014/15 Celebrity Mastermind was a fan of four wheels long before it helped shape his career.
He “can’t remember a time” when he hadn’t “been absolutely obsessed with cars” and explains that it was TV and print material that really got his pulse racing back in the day.
“People always say: ‘Was there an experience or a thing that made you (get into cars)’ and I just can’t think of a thing,” said the proud owner of a Triumph TR7.
“I can’t remember not being just, absolutely, fascinated by all cars. I watched things like The Persuaders! and the New Avengers and all of these kinds of exciting TV shows where they had glamorous cars and there was a glamorous lifestyle sort of associated with these cars, so I found that very appealing.
“I just started buying car magazines when I was about 10 or 11; Street Machine and Custom Car occasionally, which at the time had topless ladies on the cover and inside, so that was quite an exciting thing to do. When I was 13, on holiday, I found a copy of Car Magazine and that completely changed my life.
“The quality of writing about cars, it kind of just made the whole thing seem really important and fascinating and it wasn’t trivial and banal. It was kind of really incisive and it opened up this whole world and I’ve bought every issue since and I think I’ve got every issue now since about 1965 and most of the issues before that. I love reading in general and I love reading about cars.”
Plenty more episodes of Fuelling Around to enjoy
Series four is motoring along at pace but there’s still a wealth of previous episodes for you to wrap your ears around.
A host of celebrity guests has littered the award-winning offering that has so far produced a string of cracking episodes to listen to.