Gumball 3000 Rally: What a day !

Wednesday, May 19 2004, 00:00:00

Rick's Cafe was the checkpoint for the 6th annual "Gumball 3000" international car rally, Friday May 7. The rally began in Paris on May 5, with an itinerary that included stops in Madrid, Marbella, Tangier, Casablanca, Marrakech, Fes, Barcelona and finally ending in Cannes for the Film Festival. Three hundred people passed through Rick's during the afternoon and early evening and over 150 cars were on display outside. The cars ranged from Ferraris, Lamborginis, Porsches to Bentleys, Humvees and even a New York police car (that got lost en route, having to ask for directions at a gas station!).

The kitchen did a stellar job dishing out a full course luncheon including real New York cheescake for dessert. The zany, costumed participants gave Rick's a Fellini-esque aura for a few hours, enjoyed the surroundings and hospitality. Local authorities handled the parking and crowd and traffic control and in many cases helped escort cars to the site. Rick's neighbor, Garage Neptune, reached the pinnacle of success when a Viper rolled in for a pit stop. Once checked in the drivers obtained their "Letters of Transit" on to Marrakech for their overnight stop. They roared off in the same fashion as they arrived, and Rick's Cafe began to receive customers for dinner service.