The Gumball Rally
The Gumball Rally is a 1976 film directed and co-written by Charles Bail about a coast-to-coast road race. It was inspired by the Cannonball Baker Sea-To-Shining-Sea Memorial Trophy Dash run by Brock Yates which inspired several other films, including Cannonball and Cannonball Run, as well as the Gumball 3000 international race.
At Disneyland and Disney World, once a year Disney fans hold what is called the MiceChat Gumball Rally. The objective is simple: to ride as many rides in Disneyland as possible in a single day. The winning teams are presented with medals and have bragging rights forever after; and the grand prize is a gumball machine topped by Cinderella’s Castle, obviously inspired by the movie’s Gumball Trophy.
In 1971, the Daytona gained notoriety when one was driven by Dan Gurney and Brock Yates in the inaugural Cannonball Baker Sea-To-Shining-Sea Memorial Trophy Dash. Showcasing the car’s potential for sustained high speed travel, the pair won with an average speed of 80.1 miles per hour (129 km/h), completing the distance from New York to L.A. in 35 hours 54 minutes (2,876 miles (4,628 km)).
Some of the featured cars:
1966 Ford Shelby Cobra 427 ‘Side Oiler’ (Cobra Team)
1974 Ferrari Daytona (Ferrari Team)
1974 Porsche 911 Targa (Porsche Team)
1971 Dodge Polara 440 police car (Dodge Team)
1970 1/2 Chevrolet Camaro Z28 (Camaro Team)
Two Ferrari Daytonas were used (main car and a backup) The serial numbers were 14829 and 16467. Chassis 14829 was at the Peterson Automotive Museum until August 2013 and was once owned by Mel Blanc. Chassis 16467 also appeared in ‘A Star in Born’ (1976)
An international version of the Gumball called the Gumball 3000 was created by a Briton, Maximillion Cooper, as a 3000 mile race through multiple countries. How one enters and what the rules may be are not clear, though it appears checkpoints are involved. However, most of the drivers appear to be celebrities of various sorts, and the entry fees are rumored to be substantial. The Rally often partners with charities such as the Wounded Warrior Project as a fundraising event. The one thing that the Gumball 3000 has in common with the original Gumball Rally is that any sort of vehicle can be entered. Past entries have included a Blower Bentley similar to the one driven by John Steed in The Avengers, to a 1965 Aston Martin DB5, to a Winnebago RV, to an ex-New York Police Department Ford Crown Victoria in NYPD livery. Prizes are awarded for best time, most original car, for special actions during the race, and to whomever best exemplifies the good-hearted spirit of the event, the coveted ‘Gumball Spirit Trophy.’
Franco: And now my friend, the first-a rule of Italian driving.
[Franco rips off his rear-view mirror and throws it out of the car]
Franco: What’s-a behind me is not important.
Barney Donahue: You know how often my wife tried to get me to get rid of this car? Well that’s German machinery for you. The car outlasted her.
Prof. Samuel Graves – Cobra Team: From the garage to the Jersey Turnpike, six minutes, fifty-eight seconds. That’s fifteen seconds better than last year.
[At the Guest Back Room of Gallagher’s Steak House, Michael Bannon welcomes the racers]
Bannon: Ladies, Gentlemen, you have been selected because you have the necessary skills. You are here because you have the determination to suceed. Now, it won’t be as easy as last year. There are some who will use any means to try and stop us. Some of you won’t make it. For those of you who do, there’ll be no glory, no headlines. But… just a few magic hours flat out against the red line, with no catalytic converter and no 55 mile-an-hour speed limit.
Bannon: Ladies and gentlemen… The Gumball Rally has begun!
[Guests cheers and applauds; Smith taps glass to quiet them down]
Smith: Um, for those of you who never done this before, I think I better go over the rules. Um, first thing to remember is there are no rules.
Smith: The first vehicle to reach the parking lot of the Queen Mary in Long Beach is the winner, the unofficial winner, as this is an unofficial race. And, uh, so it follows thst none of us are in this race. We don’t want any civilian involvement. No accidents, please. Remember, it’s 2,900 miles. That, 34 hours and 11 minutes, is the record, set last year by our dear friend, Mr. Bannon.
[Guest cheer as Graves shakes Michael’s hand]
Smith: Now I know we all oughta get some rest tonight, but, uh, may I? I’d like to propose a toast… to internal combustion and wind in the face.
In 2014, and with a cost for participants of £40,000 based on two sharing a single vehicle, the rally will start in the United States in Miami, pass through Atlanta, and finish in New York City. Then it will proceed, with participants and cars being loaded onto planes, over to Western Europe, starting in Edinburgh, continuing through London, Paris, and Barcelona, before finally culminating on the island of Ibiza.
Star of Pimp my Ride, Xzibit and Jamiroquai’s Jay Kay join the adidas team for the Gumball 3000 – 2014
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