Don’t try to emulate Netflix’s new reality competition Hyperdrive at home, kids. The 10-episode series features 28 elite street racers willing to test their skills on one of the largest and most difficult automotive courses in the world.
As a Hyperdrive executive producer pointed out, it’s essentially American Ninja Warrior, but with cars. "You really had no idea what to expect," competitor Brittany Williams said after the fact. "So there was no way to prepare, not just your car for the course or the obstacles, but to prepare yourself."
Who hosts Netflix’s Hyperdrive?
The show actually has four different hosts: sports anchor Lindsay Czarniak, auto racing analyst Rutledge Wood, sportscaster Mike Hill, and retired mixed martial artist Michael Bisping.
"The stories these [competitors] have, they’re just like you and me," Lindsay shared on NBC’s Today. "It’s really all about having a dream and going for it because these people all have side jobs… They all gave up time, they gave up money to come and do this."
The blonde beauty also got to experience what it felt like to be in the car during a stunt run. "I was initially really worried about losing my lunch when I knew I was going to do that," she admitted.
"[The stunt driver] said, 'Everything that we’re about to do, your body’s going to feel like it’s wrong, but it’s gonna be awesome.' And that was the most exhilarating thrill of my life."
Needless to say, the concept poses a number of different risks. "Truthfully, the biggest problem was danger," executive producer Chris Cowan confessed in an interview with EW. "It was incredibly important for us that they drive their own cars."
"Most of the time in TV, you try and mitigate your liability in trying to make the playing field fair, and you’d maybe give them the cars and kind of control it, but we wanted them to bring their own machines to the course and try and dominate it however they possibly could," he explained. "We weren’t looking to restrict anyone’s speed."
Where is Hyperdrive filmed?
The series was shot in July 2018 over a span of three weeks at the Eastman Business Park in Rochester, N.Y.
Academy-Award winner Charlize Theron, who serves as an executive producer, even showed up to watch part of the filming. "We needed a field that was big enough for [the course], so our location in Rochester was over 100 acres," Chris revealed. "We wanted it to look badass but then be able to turn into a race track on a nightly basis."
That required a pretty big production crew. "Shooting the whole thing at night, think of the scale of all this, and then you have to light the whole thing!" Chris remarked. "It was basically like lighting a 100-acre movie set."
Ultimately, the producer and his team "wanted to create a groundbreaking spectacle that you could only find on Netflix — something that was too stupid to attempt anywhere else." Mission accomplished.
You can watch all 10 episodes of Hyperdrive on the streaming platform now.