Kick Start (TV series)
|Developed by||Nick Brittan|
|Presented by||John Lampkin (commentator)|
|Theme music composer||Renate Vaplus|
|Opening theme||Be My Boogie Woogie Baby by Mr. Walkie-Talkie|
|Country of origin||UK|
|No. of seasons||13|
|Executive producer(s)||Derek Smith|
|Original channel||BBC One|
|Original run||6 August 1979 – 1 June 1988|
|Junior Kick Start|
|Presented by||Peter Purves (presenter)
John Lampkin (commentator)
|Original run||1980 – 17 August 1992|
Kick Start was a popular series on BBC television inspired by motorcycle trials riding, a sport akin to horse show jumping, but on motorbikes. The programme was first aired in August 1979 and ran until 1988.
The programme was devised by Nick Brittan and produced by BBC Pebble Mill producer Derek Smith, who also created Top Gear.
The idea for Kick Start originated when the 1978 Lombard RAC Rally organiser, Nick Brittan, realised that top trials motorcyclists, competing over a hazardous track and obstacles, might make exciting television 
Run against the clock, the show illustrated some of the skills needed in normal trials riding. In the Kick Start format, the riders went over awesome obstacles such as piles of logs, oil drums, rockeries, water troughs, up a wall, up steep banking or a cliff-face and over a car (VW Beetle). Penalties, in the form of time added to their round time, would be given for putting a foot on the ground while tackling an obstacle or touching or knocking over specified parts of an obstacle (such as the "bunny hop").
The knock-out competition had a modest first prize of £500.
For the following series, Travis was replaced by Peter Purves of Blue Peter fame. In later years, an off-shoot programme, Junior Kick Start, was also screened. Of a similar theme, this programme was for younger contestants, notably Dougie Lampkin. Perhaps the best remembered incident from both versions of the programme was when a ten-year-old competitor in Junior Kick Start, Mark Scofield, fell from an obstacle into a ditch. Two volunteers from the St. John Ambulance attempted to help but themselves fell into the ditch in comical fashion; commentator Peter Purves had to apologise as he struggled to hold back laughing at the incident.
The courses and obstacles were designed to be slightly easier for the younger contestants in Junior Kick Start.
A video-game inspired by the series called Kikstart was released for the Commodore 64 in 1985 by Mastertronic. It was also released for the ZX Spectrum and Atari 8-bit computers. According to the game's programmer, Shaun Southern, "The C64 version's name at least, was a shameless rip-off of the TV series."
- "Kick Start". UKGameshows. Retrieved 2012-11-22.
- Extract of 'St John's Ambulance' incident
- "The 10 funniest sports shows". Guardian. Retrieved 2012-11-22.
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- "Jean-Pierre Goy". IMDb.com. Retrieved 2012-11-22.
- "Kikstart - Commodore 64 Game / C64 Games, C64 reviews, downloads & SID tunes". Lemon64.com. Retrieved 2012-11-22.
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