Penny P

The narrow streets may have been replaced by the sprawling US highways; the angry bovines by scorching hot metal; but as sure as sugar is sweet…. the Bullrun is coming….

Tonnes of charging testosterone hurtling across the States on a mobile speed-rodeo. You can bet your blazin’ saddles that we’ll be taking the bull by its horns and critter-chasing the BullBlazers here at GT Spirit for the duration of this fabulous exhaust-blasting event…..

One such go-getting raging bull is GTSpirit member Vanimal. Always prepared and ever-ready to assist fellow drivers, Vanimal has displayed a personal spirit that is the embodiment of the notion of the event. Having gobbled up Gumball 2004 and Bullrun 2005, he returns to Bullrun 2006 to continue amassing his tarmac-chomping skills with his new co-pilot. I caught up with him for an exclusive peek into the mind of a true-blood participant as he prepares for another high-voltage voyage into the auto-abyss of the Bullrun:

Penny P: Dish the dirt on the highs and lows of this years’ wheels of choice… and which car you’d really drool to drive given half a chance.

Vanimal: This year I’m driving a Subaru Forester of all cars! But, the boys at Cobb Tuning have done one hell of a number on it and turned it into an STI with cargo room. Aside from the conspicuous “Ricer” factor, I’m really looking forward to driving this car on the Bullrun. And what’s more, I’ve offered cargo space to my friends in exotic cars with no luggage space… every pound of luggage I take means I get to drive their car for ten minutes ;) Deal!

If I had my choice of cars to take, I’d probably go with something classy like a Morgan 4/4. [fabulous choice – they’re hand built just a stone’s throw from where I was born and bred! – Penny] I suppose I wouldn’t turn down a Caterham either. Something with a huge Adventure/Fun rating. I’d leave the Paganis and Lambos to the folks with nice hair.

Penny P: What’s going to make Bullrun 2006 stand out from previous years?

Vanimal: This year is still under tight wraps, but I hear there’s stunning stuff planned. Still, if it’s half the fun I’ve had on previous rallies I’d still walk away exhausted and content. One of the coolest things I’ve heard; Mario Andretti will be giving the Bullrunners “hot laps” at an undisclosed racetrack! That could go down as the most radical thing I’ll ever do in my life!

Penny P: What are the most annoying habits and entertaining traits of your co-pilot?

Vanimal: My Co-Pilot is my Dad! By default there’s a million things that are annoying, but I wouldn’t want to do the rally with anyone else! We were originally going to do the ’04 Gumball together but he had to back out for work-related reasons. He can snore like Wooley Mammoth though, so I’m not going to be getting any sleep!

Penny P: What’s your best new onboard super-naughty gadget and why will it be so indispensable?

Vanimal: Well, this is the first year I’m actually going to try using GPS navigation. My last two rallies I’ve had navigators using paper maps, and it worked excellent! Don’t know why I’m making the switch really, keeping up with the Jones’s maybe? We’re bringing paper maps just in case though.

Penny P: What have you got up your sleeve to out-fox the other Bullrunners this year, and how the hell did you come up with the idea?! Is the simple explanation that you are in fact the Bullrun’s answer to Dr. Evil?

Vanimal: One of the funniest things I have is a Radar Detector Setter-Offer. It sets off some of the best detectors out there, and combined with my siren, PA, and grill lights should provide for some on the road hilarity. Too bad Alex can’t go this year, my main goal was to pull him over.

Penny P: In the world of the roadworthy and unorthodox, who would be the most unusual Bullrunner you’d like to see enter the rally? Which car would you choose for them and why? What would you expect from them in terms of antics?

Vanimal: Being a bookworm/nerd type… I’d have to say I’d like to see my favorite author Neal Stephenson on the rally. He probably hates cars and the people that drive them, but it would still be fun to do the rally with him and then read his account of it. Oh yea, and he’d have to do the rally in a pizza delivery car owned by the mafia. Just because.

Penny P: Tell us an amusing secret about another Bullrunner…

Vanimal: Hmmm…. Alex Roy has a Subaru too, but mine’s waaay faster!

A huge thank you to Vanimal for taking time out to elope from his BR duties to feed us hungry mortals! I hope that he’ll be in a fit enough state to continue to update La Penny with his upfront and totally delightful perspective throughout the challenge…

I’ll take this opportunity to wish Vanimal and Pops-Vanimal an incredibly entertaining and successful juice-cruise for their antics on this ballistic adventure…. all the best, boys!

Ooh-wow….If I’m not mistaken, we have an incredible upcoming journey on our hands….



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