Richard Hammond: My leg is shorter after car crash
Richard Hammond has said his leg was left slightly shorter due to an injury on his knee following a major car crash.
The TV presenter was filming for The Grand Tour in Switzerland when the car he was in crashed and – just moments after he managed to climb out – burst into flames.
Having escaped with a broken knee, he underwent a major operation to fix it, and said he is likely to be driving again in a “couple of months”.
But the diminutive 47-year-old, whose height is often the source of playful jibes from his Grand Tour co-stars Jeremy Clarkson and James May, has told of how the incident has left his leg temporarily shorter.
He told This Morning’s Phillip Schofield and Holly Willoughby: “I think when the car touched down nose-first, it drove that leg up there into the knee joint and smashed the bottom bit of the knee here.
“But as a result of that (doctors) told me I’d lost 7mm of height in the knee.”
He added: “I can’t be sparing that!”
Willoughby asked if he will be “uneven”, to which Hammond replied drily: “Yes, I’m just going to be running in circles forever.”
He added: “No, they’ve put the bit back up inside the knee and then they’ve put a plate down – it’s my Swiss Army knee, it’s metal. And then some pins through there are holding it together, so in a few months it’ll fix.”
Schofield joked that he should have asked doctors to “jack you up a bit”.
Hammond said: “But then I’d have been taller on that side, and then they’d have to do the other knee and it really hurts.”
The former Top Gear star said he will not be able to walk on his knee for a “few months”, and that he will not be able to go running for at least a year.
He said he is keen to return to driving despite the accident, which came nearly 11 years after he was in a high-speed crash that left him in a coma.
Hammond said: “I’ll be driving in – it’ll be weeks, not months, maybe a couple of months max.”
He said it hasn’t put him off filming his motoring show, but that he “might go a bit slowly” next time he is driving on a Swiss mountain.
Appearing alongside his wife Mindy, Hammond apologised for what he had put her through, and she said she tries not to think about the dangers of his job.
She said: “I can’t think about it, I just think, “Oh he’s gone to work,” that’s it… I did say, three strikes and you’re out, you’ve had two.”
Hammond added: “We do look at the risks, and it’s not something that’s worth getting injured in the pursuit of, really, and generally we get it right, but occasionally we get it wrong.”