Behind the Scenes: Jacob Tyler on Top Gear USA

by Jake Brenner

When Les and Charlie finally decided to share with us that Jacob Tyler would be featured on an episode of Top Gear USA, we couldn’t help but get excited; but to also learn that the filming would be held the very next day came as a shock. “If this is some kind of a joke, it’s not funny,” I replied; but it wasn’t a joke, or even a dream. Immediately it took me back to familiar feelings of anticipation similar to Christmas Eve or the first day of school.


On the morning of the shoot you could feel the electricity in the office. The production crew and film staff arrived early and crowded themselves into the north conference room meticulously measuring light levels and adjusting camera angles. Wiring rigs and light fixtures draped across our hallways like jungle vines, which caused the film crew to eventually shut down our north hallway for the day. It’s safe to say they rolled deep.

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Filming took most of the day and from my desk on the north side of the building I often heard eruptions of laughter and instruction barked out. Needless to say, it’s pretty hard to concentrate when one of your favorite TV shows is being filmed on the other side of some dry wall.

Although we took our own pictures throughout the day, we had strict instructions to withhold from sharing them before the episode aired. Around 2pm we got word that a blog post had surfaced on Jalopnik mentioning the Top Gear crew in our building and posed questions as to why they were in downtown San Diego.

“Oh well. You still can’t say anything,” was the response.

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I was fortunate enough to talk with Adam, Rutledge and Tanner between filming. Now I don’t have a history of sipping champagne with celebrities, but I can confidently say that they were some of the most humble people I’ve ever met. We only talked for about 30 minutes but I was laughing the entire time. Naturally, the conversations revolved around cars…first cars, dream cars, random car stories and everything in between.

Fun Fact: Contrary to popular belief, the hosts were actually the ones who picked the SVX, XR4Ti, and Allante that were used in the show, not the producers.

Massages between filming? Not here. When they weren’t on camera they were around helping everyone else out. At one point Adam was even on day care duty hanging out with Les’s son Jacob (yes, the Jacob Tyler). It was this type of humble and inviting attitude that made the day so enjoyable.

The most difficult part about the whole experience was keeping my mouth shut for the 3 months that followed the shoot. However, now it’s time to brag…

Our experience with Top Gear was nothing short of thrilling and we’re extremely proud and honored to have been chosen for the opportunity. Thanks to everyone who watched and the outstanding Top Gear USA cast and crew for giving us a day at the office we’ll never forget.

Did you see the episode? What did you think of Les, Charlie and Jose’s segment? Let us know in the comments and be sure to check out our Facebook page for a full gallery of shots.