After 8 days
spent racing 3,000 miles across 3 continents, the supercars
taking part in the Gumball 3000 Rally rolled across the
finish line on 'Rodeo Drive' in Los Angeles late on Sunday
afternoon. The Gumball 3000 Rally, which attracts a swage of
desirable prestige and luxury cars, celebrities and rich
eccentrics, started from London a week last Sunday. The
crews then raced across Europe to the Serbian Belgrade
before the cars were airlifted to Thailand for a second
1,000 mile leg.
The 120-strong Gumball 3000 field included many famous
Italian supercars, with the Ferrari and Maserati brands both
being very well represented. Exotics to catch the eye
include the Ferrari F430, F40, F50, 612 Scaglietti and Enzo;
Lamborghini Murciélago, Roadster, Diablo, Gallardo and
Gallardo Spyder; and the Maserati MC12.
With this route
under their belts the survivors were then freighted to Salt
Lake City in Utah for the final leg which took them last
weekend via Las Vegas to the Rodeo Drive Beverley Hills
finish line. After collecting their cars from SLC Airport on
Friday morning all the remaining vehicles 'paraded' to
downtown SLC to the Utah Jazz home at the Delta Centre. Then
they drove to a new race track outside SLC called the
'Miller Motorsports Park' - providing local fans with a
great opportunity to watch these sportscars at full speed,
and also a 'drift racing' display.
Then it was off to Las Vegas to the Hard Rock Hotel that
evening between where the cars started arriving after 5pm.
That night the rally lived up to its celebrity billing as
hip hop legend 'Snoop Dogg' did an "exclusive" Gumball
performance at 'The Joint' inside the Hard Rock Hotel. After
checking out Death Valley it the morning, the Gumballers
crossed the finish line on the famous 'Rodeo Drive' in
Beverly Hills late that afternoon. Rodeo Drive was closed
for the finish, and cars were parked on display until early
evening before they paraded to the Beverly Hilton Hotel.
That night Gumballers partied with Playmates at the famous
Playboy Mansion where DJ AM, Blink 182's Travis Barker
and, 'porn star' Ron Jeremy were mixing the tunes.
There is no
prize for coming first. However all entrants received a
bronze statue of Burt Reynolds' bust fancied after his
portrayal of J.J. McClure in Cannonball Run film; although
all were hoping to be awarded the prestigious accolade of
'Spirit of the Gumball' Trophy (a gumball machine, complete
with gum!) - a prize for the Gumballer who most embodies the
free, uncompromising character of the rally. This eventually
went to the Rolls-Royce Phantom that crashed out early on.
Other awards recognized were for 'Most Stylish', Best Car,
etc. and each sponsor awarded their own trophy for whatever
seemed fitting. Drawing inspiration from the 1970s race, the
movies and Smokey and the Bandit, Maximillion Cooper started
the modern edition of the game in the summer of 1999 as the
Gumball 3000 road rally. Gumball 3000 has since gained the
reputation as road race for the modern era and has captured
the attention. With celebrity participation the public have
been bought closer to the race by witnessing it on
everything from MTV to reading about it in Vanity Fair.