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Roary the Racing Car is an American/British stop-motion children's television series created by David Jenkins and produced by Chapman Entertainment, Cosgrove Hall Films, HIT Entertainment, and PBS Kids Sprout Original Production. It follows the adventures of Roary and his racing car friends at Silver Hatch race track.

Overview[]

The series follows the lives and adventures of racing vehicles Roary, Maxi, Cici, Drifter, Tin Top, and the people they work for, Big Chris the mechanic and Marsha the race marshall and the owner of the race track, Mr. Carburettor. Also there's Officer Pete, Farmer Green, Molecolm, Flash and many more. The plot sometimes revolves around other vehicle characters, such as Rusty, F.B, Nick, Plugger, Zippee, Hellie, Breeze, Conrod, James, and Loada.


Setting[]

Roary the Racing Car is set around a fictional motor racing circuit called Silver Hatch (a portmanteau of the names of the two British Grand Prix racing circuits, Silverstone and Brands Hatch). The majority of the action takes place at the track's pits and workshop, although we often follow the cars on their laps around the track. Occasionally, the characters venture to external locations such as the nearby beach.


Narration[]

Every story begins and ends with a brief narration from racing car driver Sir Stirling Moss. He is also used as a voice-over. The US version is narrated by American stock car driver Sam Hornish Jr.


Characters and voice cast[]

Roary (from the United Kingdom, voiced by Maria Darling) is a young and excitable racing car who is the series' protagonist. He wears a white baseball cap with a checkered pattern at the bottom and a red star emblazoned with the number 1 at the top. Roary is new to Silver Hatch, but with the help of his friends, he is quickly learning the ropes at Silver Hatch. He always wants to impress Big Chris and copy all of his friends' moves. Roary does not know too much about racing yet, but he has won quite a few races and is slowly learning how to become a star racing car. He is based on a Formula Ford race car and his catchphrase is "Light 'em up!".

Trucksy/FB (voiced by Dominic Frisby), Roary's other best friend, is Farmer Green's pickup truck. He is usually seen with Farmer Green or playing with two of his best friends, Roary and Cici. He has a West Country accent. He is loosely based on a Chevrolet 3100.

Zizzy/Cici (from France, voiced by Maria Darling), is a bright pink and purple stunt car with the number 3 painted in a purple circle on her front and doors. She is an electric Rally Car, carrying solar panels on her roof and she speaks with a French accent. She is loosely based on a first generation Citroën C1 rally car.

Maxi (from Italy, voiced by Marc Silk) is a yellow Formula 1 type racing car who was the star of Silver Hatch before Roary arrived. He wears sunglasses and a blue cap and sports the number 5. Maxi has an Italian accent, although this is de-emphasized in the US voiceover. There is a healthy sibling rivalry between Maxi and Roary. He is based on a Formule One racing car. He has a tendency to act spoiled, and often bullies the other cars.

Tin Top (from the United States of America, voiced by Kerry Shale) is a stock car. He sports the number 88 and, in the UK dub, he speaks in a mock-American accent, voiced by Peter Kay. In the US version, Tin Top speaks in a stereotypical "urban" accent. He is based on a NASCAR stock car. He has musophobia (fear of mice).

Dragga/Drifter (from Japan, voiced by Marc Silk) is a Drift racing car. In line with his name, he can be observed to exhibit extreme oversteer handling characteristics, with his tail end swinging out wide on every corner. He has an on-board computer with a head-up display in his windscreen. He sports a dragon design on his sides with neon undertray lighting. He wears the number 6 on the top of his front windshield and back windshield. He speaks in a mock Japanese accent. His character loosely takes design cues from the Nissan Silvia S15 and Nissan R-34 Skyline. He has a very calm, serene personality, and rarely gets angry or upset.

Rusty the Caravan (voiced by Dominic Frisby) is Big Chris' home on wheels who lives at Silver Hatch. He is often found to be sleeping, but rarely minds being woken up by the other characters and he enjoys reminiscing about his time as a mobile caravan. He can give useful advice, but often entirely by accident. Big Chris lives in Rusty.

Lugga/Plugger (voiced by Tim Whitnall) is a 4x4 off-road vehicle or "mud-plugger". In the UK version, he speaks with a soft Caribbean accent; in the US version, he speaks in a mild Southern drawl. He often uses his telescopic winch to rescue Roary and Maxi from mud, gravel, or sand. Plugger can often be heard uttering his catchphrase, "No need to race, Plugger's on the case!" He is based on a fourth generation Mitsubishi L200.

Zippee is Marsha's motor scooter. She is of indeterminate gender as the only vocalizations made by Zippee are a beeping sound, similar to a small car horn, which is her catchphrase, "Beep-beep!" (She's the only vehicle character on Roary The Racing Car who does not talk.) She is based on a Vespa motor scooter.

Hellie is a bright red and purple helicopter, who transports Mr. Carburettor around the track. He has a large headset which he uses to communicate with the ground-crew, usually broadcasting a booming "Hellie is go!" Marc Silk voices him.

James is a silver British classic sports car who takes Mamma Mia wherever she needs to go. He has several gizmos and gadgets including an ejector seat, an umbrella, water cannons, and a towel. He speaks in an English accent. He is named after James Bond and Dominic Frisby voices him. He is loosely based on an Aston Martin DB5.

Nick is the a high speed police car who works with PC Pete to keep the cars safe. Marc Silk voices him. He is based on a Lamborghini Gallardo, and his name is British slang for Police Station.

Breeze (from Australia) is a turquoise beach buggy who lives at the beach at Silver Hatch. Maria Darling voices her. She is based on a Meyers Manx dune buggy.

Loada is a transport truck who takes the cars to special occasions. He has many stories from the road and he enjoys telling them to his friends. His catchphrase is "Lock n' Loada!" and he has an Eastern European accent. Dominic Frisby voices him. He is a European-style Cab over type Lorry.

Conrod (from Australia) is a V8 touring car who is named after the stretch of the racetrack at the Mount Panorama Circuit in Bathurst, New South Wales. In the UK version, Australian V8 Supercar champion Craig Lowndes voices him. In the US version, Marc Silk voices him. He is based on a Team Vodafone FG Ford Falcon of the V8 supercars touring car race series.

Big Chris is Silver Hatch race track's mechanic. He occasionally commentates and starts races. He lives in Rusty the caravan and looks after the race track and cars. Big Chris has a typically northern catchphrase, "If you bend it, you mend it!" (The US version, much less mellifluous, is "If you bend it, you fix it!") Big Chris is portrayed as being very messy and absent-minded, often "losing" objects directly in his line of sight, and eternally surprised by his own walkie-talkie. While working on the cars, he often practices his karaoke with an out-of-tune version of a song called "Motor Man". Comedian Peter Kay voices him in the UK dub, while in the US dub, Kerry Shale voices him.

Marsha is a race Marshall and the unofficial administrator of the Silver Hatch race track. She speaks with a thick British accent. Maria Darling voices her.

Mr. "Antonio" Carburettor is the flamboyant owner of Silver Hatch race track. In the UK version, he has with a pronounced Italian accent, while in the US version, he has a New York accent. His favourite car is Maxi, who he considers to be the greatest car in all the world. He also has a gold tooth. Tim Whitnall voices him.

Farmer Green owns the farm located just to the side of the Silver Hatch race track. He owns Dinkie the Donkey and likes to invent bio-fuels. Tim Whitnall voices him.

Mamma Mia is of Mr. Carburettor's mother and the owner of James. She speaks with an Italian accent. Maria Darling voices her.

PC Pete is the Silver Hatch policeman and Marsha's younger brother, accompanying Nick the police car. Dominic Frisby voices him.

The Track Inspector is the inspector who sometimes comes to the track to be shown around the track. Dominic Frisby voices him.

Hugo Amarillo is a racing car designer who once came to the track to be shown around. Dominic Frisby voices him.

The Pizza Boy is a boy who delivers pizza to Big Chris as seen in "Silver Hatch Fun Run". Dominic Frisby voices him.

Murray Walker is the world's class commentator, He is voiced by Murray Walker OBE.

Furz/Flash is an anthropomorphic rabbit, who lives under a tree on the edge of the track at "Hare-Pin Bend" (a play on 'hairpin turn'). He regularly tries to cause mischief. Marc Silk voices him.

Molecolm, Flash's best friend, is a bespectacled mole who is often found clearing up the mess left behind after Flash has tried to cause havoc. Being a mole, he lives underground, and often digs out, causing molehills to appear when he comes up. Dominic Frisby voices him.

Dinkie the Donkey is an old, grey donkey who is often seen at the side of the race track (and occasionally on it), with his ears flapping after the cars race past him. Marc Silk performs his vocal effects.


Production[]

The series uses a combination of computer-generated imagery and stop-motion animation; the stop frame animation was initially provided by Cosgrove Hall Films, HIT Entertainment, and PBS Kids Sprout, the producer of Noddy's Toyland Adventures, the 2004 Postman Pat series, and many other shows produced by said company, and latterly by Chapman Entertainment and HIT Entertainment's own in-house studio. The series was originated by David Jenkins, who spent four years working in senior management at Brands Hatch Race Circuit. The idea was conceived while watching the Grand Prix on television with his then-18-month-old son, Tom. It was designed and developed by Keith Chapman, creative director of HIT Entertainment and the creator of Bob the Builder 2001-2014, Fifi and the Flowertots, and later, Thomas & Friends, and the series executive producer is Greg Lynn, Peter Curtis, and Kate Fawkes.

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