He's 6/1 to open an Argentinian steak restaurant and Chris Evans is odds-on to replace him: Here are the questions bookies are trying to answer about the future of Jeremy Clarkson and Top Gear

Emma Haslett
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Ambassador to the Falkland Islands? Unlikely... (Source: Corbis)

What will Jeremy Clarkson do now? It's one of the many questions on everyone's lips after his career as Top Gear presenter was very publicly laid to rest by BBC controller Mark Thomspon today.

Naturally, the decision not to renew his contract sent bookies into a feverish bout of calculator bashing, as they tried to work out every single possibility for what could happen to Top Gear, Jeremy Clarkson - and anyone connected with the show - next.

Here are the questions they've been trying to answer:

1. Who'll replace Clarkson?

Paddy Power has BBC Radio 2 presenter Chris Evans at 5/4 to step into Clarkson's rather large shoes, although showjumper-cum-supermodel Jodie Kidd, who also happens to race cars, is 6/1.

Also on the list are pint-sized The X Factor presenter Dermot O'Leary and former "Star in a reasonably priced car" ace Steve Coogan, both at 10/1. Further down the list are Formula One star Lewis Hamilton, at 100/1 - and soon-to-be-ex Mayor of London Boris Johnson, at 50/1.

2. What will Clarkson do next?

Bookies reckon Clarkson is 6/1 to open his own streak restaurant (Argentine, natch); 16/1 to stand for Ukip and 25/1 to be revealed as The Stig.

They also have him at 500/1 to become British ambassador to the Falklands (no word on whether that position actually exists), and at the same odds to release a fitness DVD for Christmas.

3. What of James May and Richard Hammond?

The pair are at 5/1 to move Top Gear to ITV, while Hammond is at 1/4 to appear in the next series (series 23, ya'll) and May is at 1/3.

4. Will Top Gear itself survive?

Not likely: it's 33/1 that the BBC will announce this week it'll be axed altogether.

5. Will this affect the license fee?

Top Gear may be BBC Worldwide's biggest earner, but bookies reckon the loss of its star is unlikely to affect viewers' wallets: the chances of the BBC announcing an increase in the annual license fee are put at 200/1.

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