‘Friends’ Actor Matt LeBlanc Has the Skills of a Professional Race Car Driver

You probably know him and love him most as Friends funny man, Joey Tribbiani. Matt LeBlanc certainly made a name for himself in the sitcom realm, and many of his iconic one-liners still endure in today’s pop and meme culture. But his career goes far beyond his, “how you doing” persona.

In fact, he’s continued his work on-screen in a completely unrelated industry segment. Matt LeBlanc not only has acting chops. He also has a passion for cars and the skills of a professional race car driver. His diverse resume of talents allows him to not only spend time on camera, but also on the racetrack.

‘Friends’ catapulted Matt LeBlanc’s career

Matt LeBlanc sitting in a convertible car
Matt LeBlanc sitting in a car | Paul Drinkwater/NBCU Photo Bank

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Most actors spend a lifetime working but attribute their successes to that one big break that brought the most fame and recognition. For Matt LeBlanc, his role on the television sitcom, Friends, was his shining moment.

The show was wildly successful and followed the hilarious and sometimes serious life situations of six friends living in New York. LeBlanc brought goofy antics as Joey Tribbiani, and for many fans, became a favorite among the Friends cast.

Together the ensemble won the Screen Actors Guild Award in 1996, and the show enjoyed the number one spot in ratings. LeBlanc himself, at the time, was one of the highest-paid actors in the television industry.

Life beyond ‘Friends’ fame

Matt LeBlanc began his on-screen work in television commercials and the occasional music video, back in the early ’90s. Fans might remember him appearing in Alanis Morrisette’s “Walk Away” video or Tom Petty’s “Into the Great Wide Open.”

He dabbled in a few television series roles before landing his Friends job. But once the popular show ran its course, LeBlanc ventured out again in his spinoff seriesJoey, in 2004.

He also appeared in movies such as Lost in Space and Charlie’s Angels: Full Throttle. His success continued with Episodes in 2011, a role that earned him a Golden Globe and three Emmy Award nominations, according to Biography.com.

Matt LeBlanc loves his cars and knows how to drive them

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Fans who have continued to follow Matt LeBlanc’s career over the years know he is one of the acting industry’s most dedicated Formula 1 enthusiast. He has substantial knowledge of life behind the wheel and even has enough chops to be considered a professional race car driver, according to HotCars. It’s a personal passion that landed him yet another on-screen role as the host of the popular British show, Top Gear.

Car enthusiast turned popular television series host

Matt LeBlanc, with his breadth of knowledge of cars and racing, landed his hosting job with the long-running Top Gear series in 2016. In taking this new hosting role, he became the first American host of the BBC motoring cult favorite show.

He joined the cast and co-host Chris Evans in the beginning, before partnering with later team members, Chris Harris and Rory Reid. LeBlanc continued his host duties for a few seasons before reluctantly bowing out, citing the show’s rigorous travel schedule was keeping him from much-needed time with his friends and family.

LeBlanc’s statement included tremendous gratitude for the hosting opportunity so far and admiration for his co-hosts.

Matt LeBlanc joins a long list of well-known celebrities who also pursue work within their passions for cars. Adding professional driving skills to his already impressive resume, only makes him more popular with fans. While he’s no longer hosting Top Gear, don’t expect him to abandon his love of Formula 1 and racing. He is certainly just as comfortable behind the wheel as he is on camera.