2018 marked the Rally’s 20th anniversary and, to commemorate the occasion, a book had been commissioned. It is full of stories and incredible photographs illustrating the numerous highlights of the event over the years. There are three formats, the largest of which is a stunning coffee table book, limited to 3000 copies (obviously!) worldwide.
To celebrate the launch of Gumball 3000 – 20 Years On The Road in London, an invitation-only event was held at the Asprey flagship store on Bond Street. With champagne on arrival and surrounded by stunning jewellery and watches, it provided the perfect backdrop.
Having already met the Rally’s Head of Operations on a number of occasions, on arrival I was taken straight over to meet Mr Cooper. I have visited the Rally’s website innumerable times over the years and, of course, read his biography. Even so, being totally honest, I was not exactly sure what I should expect of him. Perhaps, given the Rally’s reputation, I anticipated him to be extrovertedly flamboyant . . .
That was not how he came across at all. Instead, he was quiet and unassuming with the air of a family man. Indeed I got to meet one of his daughters at the same time and thoroughly enjoyed chatting with him.
Shortly afterwards he was invited to say a few words to commemorate the launch of the book, which he did with the same humility as he had expressed during our conversation.
He then kindly signed my copy of ‘Gumball 3000 – 20 years on the road‘ and personally welcomed me onto the Rally . . .
It just goes to show . . . isn’t it important to not judge a book by its cover?