The Cannonball and Gumball Events


Fancy a week of non-stop Partying and High-Octane Mayhem?!

Then read on.

These could be the most insane automotive spectacles across the world. The Cannonball Rally and the Gumball are the largest and most expensive events with the most popular being the American and European rally’s. Both events last for approximately 5 days including heavy, nightly, 5-star accommodation drinking binges. The American rally usually ends up in the Playboy hangouts of Los Angeles tearing through Las Vegas with different starting points. The European rally nearly always kicks off in London doing a circuit of Europe and arriving back at the original location. In the most recent years over 150 cars have attended with Sports and Film stars traveling from across the globe for the challenge. Ferrari’s, Porsche’s and Lamborghini’s seem common at these events, even a couple of Mclaren F1’s turned up for Gumball3000 in 2005. 


The Cannonball driving event was created in memory of Erwin G Cannonball Baker, an American stunt man responsible for breaking over one hundred long distance driving records. Perhaps the most famous of which, was the 53 ½ hour coast to coast drive, averaging over 50mph in the early 1930’s!

A series of films casting the now iconic Burt Reynolds and Captain Chaos boosted the Cannonball’s appeal to the most rebellious of petrol heads.

This has in turn created a market for these types of events, the ones to attend by the rich and famous remain to be the original Cannonball event, brought back to life by Tim Porter in 2002 and the Gumball3000 hosted by Maximillion Cooper. The entry fee can cost up to £40,000 per car (with 2 people) and do require deep pockets for all speeding fines encountered along the way. For mere mortals like myself to attend will require some company sponsorship, which I am still working on.

These events, although surely promoting illegal driving, do have there benefits. Huge donations are made to charity from selling the cars off at auction houses after the races and it is hard to detract from the Blue Chip’s vulgar advertisements splashed over numerous red Ferrari’s. The Gumball3000 has featured in its own DVD, various TV shows including Jack Ass on MTV and kick started conversation on the NBC Tonight Show: -

“Gumball is the coolest thing around.” Adrien Brody.

Please don’t think this is a male only area, supermodel Jodie Kidd appears to be a real life “Charlie’s Angel” being exceptionally competitive in her Maserati. She also won the 2004 Maserati Trofeo Pro-Am race in Bologna, Italy.

Pictures are taken from the Gumball3000 website 24/04/06