“Ah does that say what I think it says?” I asked my wife. A bunch of wrapped Audi RS6’s and BMW M5’s raced past in the torrential rain on our drive from the spectacular Plitvice Lakes in Croatia to it’s largest city, Zagreb. “Streetgasim 2000”? “Really?” Then some Audi RS4’s with a sole Audi R8 passed us. “Surely there would be no ‘big boys’ attending a rally with a sense of humour like that” I scoffed. Then around the next bend a chrome wrapped Ferrari 458 tore by with another Audi R8 in tow. Hmm… shows what I know I thought. Little did I know was how popular and prolific different car rallies are here in Europe catering for all sorts. The ‘Gumball’ style of rally seems to have taken off in a big way where big kids can live the Playboy lifestyle, racing their expensive cars from luxurious point to point. Now though they seem to have evolved into different events from drive convoys, track attacks and car meets.
Streetgasim, as I’d find out, has quite the following as 5 minutes later we passed a restaurant with a smorgasbord of supercar metal some wrapped with Marvel comic characters. The most eye catching was a lime green McLaren 675LT (with the McLaren Special Operations roof snorkel option) as a homage to The Hulk! A muscly arm flanked the side scoops and a screaming, wide open mouth on the bonnet. The ‘classiest’ touch however was printed on the underside of the airbrake which under hard braking would deploy and read “FUCK YOU”.… Or readable while parked at a lunch stop in the upright position.
Other notables were the white Ferrari F12 safety car with a Ferrari 458 Speciale. A chrome blue wrapped BMW i8 , three Nissan GTR’s running as a pose and an H2 Hummer sponsored by ‘Cannabis Energy Drink’.
The best wrap though was to a Range Rover Sport featuring Wolverine from X-Men whose claws out could tear the aluminium body apart.
Their route map showed they we making there way from Prague to Monaco. We’d randomly bumped into another in Montenegro of all places doing a similar route where a Jaguar XK8 lead a Porsche 997 Turbo, Ferrari 488 Spider (first of which I’d seen) and a McLaren 650S Spider. Followed behind by a Morgan. They were though too fast to even get a camera out…
Fast forward to Zagreb and we come across another rally- “Diamond Race”, travelling across Croatia from Zagreb to Sibernik. Parked out the Hilton Zagreb was a beautiful Ferrari 599 GTO. The smell of burnt rubber filled the parking lot, fresh rubber confirmed it too. Most of the convoy had left but a matte black Ferrari 458 and a red and gold 458 parked up. Their safety car was a Porsche Panamera Turbo and there was also a Dodge Viper SRT-10 with an outrageous wing- surely a randomly rare car for Croatia! Though others chose Bentley Flying Spurs for a more refined and relaxed drive.
Coming into the summer months of July and August in Europe you can see why things would ramp up in Europe and particularly London where supercar owners can bring their cars out from winter hibernation. I can’t blame them for having itchy feet. From the drivers seat of a Peugeot 208 hire car I’m jealous as it seems the best way for a European blast is by road in a fast car with loads of mates. Maybe next time….