Gumball3000 2011- London

Thursday morning was the official start of the 13th edition of the Gumball3000 rally, and it was happening no more than 10 minutes from where I work, so I blew off the morning and headed over nice and early to check things out.
This was my first personal experience with Gumball3000. I naturally expected insane cars, sexy chicks and a ton of Ballers. I was not disappointed. What I hadn’t counted on was the hands on experience and large fan base that really made the event come alive.
What many probably hadn’t counted on was the stereotypical London weather. Sun, Showers and plenty of Chills. Chills from more than just the shiny cars and ample cleavage and ass cheeks on display.
But no one paid the weather any attention. The crowd happily ebbed and flowed, gazed in awe at the 100+ cars on display and got to see some heroes to top it all off.
Well I’m speaking for myself really. There was no way I was passing up the opportunity to see some of the coolest guys on the planet. Living legends in their fields, and honest to goodness true gentlemen. They may not like that tag, but f ck it they ARE good guys.
Team Soul Assassins – DJ Muggs, Esteval Oriol and Bun B.
I walked around checking out the cars, soaking up the atmosphere and just having a great time. Around 10:30am I decided to find a spot along the starting line. I had a Dr Pepper in my hand and DJ Solo’s Nightmare Before Christmas on my iTouch. You don’t get better prepared than that.
Before long shit started to happen.
from the end of the road, came the one and only David ‘The Hoff’ Hasselhoff, closely followed by token blonde bombshell. To say he loves the limelight doesn’t even begin to….never mind. He’s an entertainer for sure. Crowd pleaser too, and I’m sure if you asked the blonde she’s concur he is something special. You’d have to take her word for it though.
Then Dirty Sanchez boys Matt Pritchard and Lee Dainton made their way in and out of the pub across the street, then cleared the fencing and performed for their adoring fans. Chants of “Lets go f cking mental” rang out. And to think I just recently discovered my roots are from Wales. Oh man.
Amongst the press and crowd suddenly appeared some nutters in fancy dress….ah yes…The Dudesons. Nice lads from Finland so I hear. I have to admit I don’t watch MTV so can’t say I know anything about them. If I had to guess, I’d say they were into performing and documenting on film ingeniously idiotic stunts and pranks. Ok that’s straight from the official programme notes. They too leapt over the fence and camera shutters erupted into life.
Amongst this we got a sight of Gumball3000 founder Maximillian Cooper and his co-pilot Eve.
In the blink of an eye we had more Ballers in the mix including Team Soul Assassins. Estevan was covering the chaos with his camera, smiling, doing his thing. Muggs and Bun B took there place in front of the headlining car (RR wrapped in Camo) for the press shots.
The crowd were buzzing, energy emitting from the drivers and fans alike. And then things calmed down and the show was over. Well not exactly, but for the purpose of the media anyway. The drivers strolled to their vehicles, grabbed a bite to eat, said hello to fans, buddies and fellow Ballers. As cool and calm as you like. I got my opportunity to ask the guys for a photo and they were happy to oblige.
Now I’m not sure how often they have 35 year old men asking for photos and autographs, I kinda hope to have been the first, and they probably hope I was the last. We’ll never know but I’ll keep an eye on Twitter and Facebook for notice of injunctions or restraining orders.
I figured any continued interest would soon cause some concern. So I took a final trip around the Piazza, saw Hoff still lapping up the attention, and set off back to work with a smile on my face and huge sense of having once more been blessed.
My 20 minute trip back to work in a torrential downpour couldn’t dampen my spirits. Though it did soak me to the bone. Shit a small dose of pneumonia was a good trade for the morning I had.
God Speed to all the drivers, much love to the guys in the Chromed Out Cadillac Escalade. Would love to hear what they are listening to in that MONSTER. As I write this I’m bangin’ “Trill OG” not for the first time but with even more admiration.
Enjoy the snaps, especially the one of me Cheesin’ ultra hard in the presence of legends. Shit, when I’m happy you’re gonna see me smiling. I’ve no shame in that.
I said it before that 2011 was going to be a special year for me, it’s proving to be that and even more. Next month I plan on seeing 2 groups I thought I’d never get a chance to see perform  live, Puddle of Mudd and House of Pain.
Someone warn Erik and Danny Boy that I’m coming!