Future of BBC’s ‘Top Gear’ uncertain after host suspended

LONDON (AP) — An off-set dustup has imperiled one of the BBC’s most lucrative shows.

BBC News said Wednesday that the broadcaster has postponed the three remaining episodes of car show “Top Gear” and suspended host Jeremy Clarkson while it investigates a reported “fracas” with a producer.

In an indication of the ardor of Clarkson’s fans, an online petition calling for his reinstatement gathered signatures far more quickly than most similar initiatives, reaching almost 300,000 names in 24 hours.

“”Top Gear”’s blend of cars and blokey banter has won it legions of fans. The current series was launched simultaneously in more than 50 countries.

It has also attracted controversy.

In October, the film crew was forced to flee Argentina after facing violent protests for allegedly referencing the 1982 Falkand Islands war.