Sunday, May 15, 2005

You really can drive from here to Paris!

Or, at least, the other way around.

It turns out, according to UK's The Telegraph, that Kim Jong-il is going to allow the Gumball Rally, a long-distance trek often described as 'a wacky race for the super rich,' to go through North Korea! Maybe not much of a surprise, considering that Kim Jong-il is wacky, super rich, and is trying to create a super race.

The Gumball Rally is a 5000-km high-speed dash (that's 3000 miles for my fellow Americans who didn't pay attention in 5th grade) by more than 100 millionaires driving an assortment of Porsches, Ferraris, Aston Martins, and other cars I could never afford.

According to The Telegraph, the event should attract "an eclectic mix of models, showbusiness personalities and captains of industry taking part in the real-life version of Hollywood's Cannonball Run."

A suave Kim Jong-il, in front, with his crew, is decked out to meet the Gumball Rally racing girls. "I hear they are even better looking than Madame Albright," he is quoted as saying.

The question is: will these models and showbusiness personalities actually go to North Korea? If so, then this is probably more like "Team America: World Police" than "Cannonball Run" (I'm referring to F.A.G. going to Pyongyang for that big event where it turned out that Kim Jong-il was a cockroach).

The meat of the article is about Maximillian Cooper, the owner and organizer of the Rally:
Mr Cooper, a former racing driver, returned from Pyongyang last month with written confirmation of the agreement dated March 18, 2005. The "letter of guarantee" seen by The Telegraph reads: "The government of the Democratic People's Republic of Korea, expressing the expectations that the proposal made by the UK Gumball 3000 to organise in May 2006 long-distance car race crossing the northern and southern parts of the Korean peninsula will contribute to ensuring peace and security on the Korean peninsula, hereby guarantees to give exceptional permission to pass through Panmunjom."
And the money quote:
According to Mr Cooper, the agreement has dumbfounded the South Korean government: "I walked into the South Korean parliament with this document and they looked at the piece of paper like it's a billion-dollar bank note." Mr Cooper, who is one of the few Westerners to have met the North Korean leader Kim Jong-Il, said that American companies, such as Coca Cola and McDonald's, would be allowed to advertise on the route of the rally. He added: "We will have 120 cars, a huge media focus, and they are allowing us to film it and take cameras with us."
Is The Jongster trying out a more pleasant veneer amidst White House reports that he's going to nuke a hole back to the Stone Age? Is he going to kidnap some of these models or showbusiness personalities (he has done that before)? Or is he just planning to steal their really expensive hubcaps?

Whatever he may have in mind, Nora advises Caprice and Darryl Hannah to bring a rohypnol tester when they stop for food and beverage at the Shinuiju Rest Area.


At 5/15/2005 10:27 AM, Blogger Stefan Ewing said...

This is just to weird/interesting for words....

At 5/15/2005 11:46 AM, Blogger Plunge said...

This is about the coolest thing ever. If I had gobs and gobs of cash, this would be one of the frivoulous things I would do. Gumball Rally! Oh, and comparing it to the Cannoball Run?!? Please, at least compare it to the actual Gumball Rally movie.

At 5/15/2005 12:34 PM, Blogger baduk said...

Is this how James Bond escaped out of North Korea, by pretending to be one of the drivers?

At 5/15/2005 10:23 PM, Blogger Stefan Ewing said...

Hah! That ridiculous vehicle that he was driving (as I recall) would not have looked out of place beside the expensive Hummers, etc....

At 5/28/2005 2:42 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I wish I had a Ferrari or sumfin...

Ah, but, there would be another problem. I'd need a driving license too... Sigh! :-(

At 6/13/2005 10:39 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Well I can say that it will be very interesting and I am looking forward to it. Certainly a piece of long as we get out alive!!


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