Team Wu will be up to no good this July on the Bullrun 2010 Rally!
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When it comes to Bullrun, Team Wu is always ahead of the game! Historically, they always show up with the more rally equipment than any other team. Last year they even brought along a Stalker ATR radar gun to confuse their competitors. They are not a force to be reckoned with. They may not bring the most suitable cars to the rally, but don’t think that they are out of the competition. In both 2008 and 2009, Team Wu accomplished the seemingly impossible by earning the Third place navigator award... in a Hummer H2 in 2008, and a decommissioned California Highway Patrol Car in 2009. It doesn’t matter if they can’t exceed 100mph, they always find a way to the podium!
Team Wu’s Bullrun adventure unofficially began in 2005 when Bill Wu and Cindi Truell signed up their brand new yellow 2005 Lamborghini Murcielago. Wu was nicknamed; Dr. Wu, by the other Bullrunners because Bill`s profession was (and still is to this day) a doctor. Yes, you can all stop guessing as to what Wu did before he “retired.” Doctor Wu was very sneaky when it came to his rally tactics. Wu always managed to find out the rally’s next destination long before everyone else, and he was seldom seen by the other Bullrunners during the driving legs. Unfortunately it was the pit stop at the Bonneville Salt Flats that did the Lamborghini in. Wu ended up finishing the rally in his 2006 Renntech modified Mercedes SL65. Then in 2006, Bill brought the same yellow Murcialago to the rally, and just like the year before, he had extreme mechanical problems. Just out of New York city, the Lambo quit and was promptly loaded onto a flatbed. Wu spent the rest of the rally as Richard Rawlings' navigator since Rawlings' buddy Micheal Jackson (no, not THAT Michael Jackson) got arrested at the Canadian border on the first day.
Wu’s competitive spirit brought him back to the Bullrun 2007 in a new car... another Lamborghini. Bill decided to bring his purple 2008 Lamborghini Murcielago, and Allen Wu joined the team in the Hummer H2 support vehicle, just in case this Lambo had problems too. Fortunately, the run was flawless!
In 2008 and 2009, Team Wu began to set their sights (unintentionally) on the podium. Being in vehicles limited to 100mph, the team decided to take a different approach to the rally. This is when their rally pranking really began, and the Team Wu that we know today emerged.
Team Wu has done it all, from pouring motor oil all over Team Twins’ Jeep SRT8’s engine in Pittsburgh, PA to calling the cops on fellow Bullrunner; Michael Schwab, in Staunton, VA for possessing “illegal” equipment in his car. They even managed to pull over a few Bullrunners themselves in their Swine Flu Patrol Car. Even with all of this pranking, Team Wu managed to get a podium finish, coming in third place.
With that being said, that doesn't mean that Team Wu has never had any setbacks of their own. At the Spring Mountain Motorsports Ranch checkpoint in 2008, the Predator Hummer was in the middle of a hot-lap when the front differential mount came loose, rotated up and punctured the oil filter and engine fluid started spilling everywhere... there was no quick fix for this.
Later in the rally, while en route to Tucson, AZ, Team Wu received numerous calls from other Bullrunners saying that the Arizona police released an All Points Bulletin for a Green Hummer. The cops were out looking for them because they had a Bullrun cameraman in the car, and apparently the Arizona police didn't like that too much. So what did Team Wu do? They pulled off into an Indian Reservation in the middle of a corn field. They got out of their Hummer and proceeded to peel off the $5,000 vinyl wrap that Bill had made for the rally. With the wrap removed, there was no longer a "Green" Hummer on the rally. They then continued on to their nightly checkpoint.
Who could forget the 2009 checkpoint at the Pine Tree Lodge in Texas where Team Wu finally got payback for their pranking on the rally. Annabelle Frankl from Team Twins had the idea to install a boot on Team Wu's Swine Flu Patrol Car. She enlisted the help of a fellow Bullrunner and installed the clamp, hiding the key down at the dock by a swamp filled with Alligators.
Team Wu scrambled to find the key, but they couldn't find it in time. They were forced to watch the rally drive off to the final destination of the rally; Austin, TX. They did eventually find the key to the clamp and made great time to the final checkpoint, arriving before many of the other Bullrunners.
This year, the team will once again comprise of brothers; Bill and Allen Wu, Bill’s girlfriend Cindi Truell, and the Wu brother’s friend; Jon Rains. What mischief will they be up to this year? Only time will tell! Beware of Team Wu! Bullrunners, you have been warned!
Interview with Bill and Allen Wu:1a) So Allen, this is your fourth Bullrun rally, what was your motivation to do the Bullrun the first time around in 2007?
Ever since my brother Bill ran his first Bullrun Rally in 2005, he wouldn't stop talking about how crazy the experience was. He kept ranting on and on about all the competitive driving and the amazing people they met on the rally. For the 2007 rally, Bill wanted to bring out a different Lambo (due to repeated mechanical failures on his first yellow Murcielago), but he figured that he would need a serious support vehicle just in case...and that's when I decided it would be a perfect time to find out for myself what all the hype was about.
1b) Bill, this is your sixth Bullrun rally, what was your motivation to do the Bullrun the first time around in 2005?
I bought a new Lamborghini Murcielago in December of 2004 and I had tons of problems with it, so the factory told me I could get a replacement one under the lemon law. I ordered a custom color which would take 8 months to deliver... They told me I could just turn in my Lambo in 8 months and get a full credit towards my new one so I thought to myself why not thrash the car and put a ton of miles on it. So I put 8000 miles in 3 months on 2 rallies before I blew it up on the salt flats.
2a) Allen, what was your first impression of Bullrun when you showed up at the start line in 2007?
The starting line in Montreal was ridiculous! There were thousands upon thousands of people gathering to watch the launch. Camera crews were capturing every moment and I was in complete shock about the adventure I was just about to embark upon. I remember thinking the line-up of cars was SO diverse. There was everything from old school muscle cars, to exotics, to even a full on, off-road rally car that was shipped to North America just for the Bullrun.
2b) Bill, what was your first impression of Bullrun when you showed up at the start line in 2005?
In 2005 the first person I met was Richard Rawlings in the lobby of the hotel. My thoughts were "this is one strange tattooed up cowboy.” At the starting line I met Dennis Rodman’s co pilot/ navigator who was an attorney. We teamed up at the start after he found out I had a ton of anti police equipment in my car they didn’t even have a radar detector in their Lambo. There were so many people and cars, it was awesome! The production was so big! I was in awe.
3) What made you want to return for Bullrun 2010?
Allen: That’s easy! The competition, the people, and the parties! Who wouldn’t want to hang out with a bunch of the coolest gear heads for a week of utter chaos?
Bill: Every year I come back to do Bullrun so I can hang out with all the friends I meet on the runs. It’s like a big reunion. The rally is more of a huge party with all your friends partying across the nation all week. I come back every year because there are tons of good people involved in the Bullrun.
4) Last year your team comprised of yourself, Bill Wu, Cindi Truell, and Jon Rains. Who is on your team this year?
Bill: Once again, me, Allen, Cindi and Jon will be returning, plus a surprise!
5) Do you have big plans for this year? Last year you guys ran the rally as the 'Swine Flu Response Team.' What is the gimmick this year?
Allen: We definitely have a few ideas in the works for this year, but we’re smart enough not to say anything in advance. Just wait! I’m sure it’ll be a surprise for everyone at the starting line in New York.
Bill: This year we will be innovating, and we will definitely be raising the bar by doing, and introducing new rules to the rally world. Just wait and see!
6) What is your absolute favorite aspect of Bullrun?
Allen: There isn’t just one favorite aspect of Bullrun… and that’s EXACTLY why we love participating every year! Andy and David select incredible driving routes through places I never knew even existed. The entire support crew is awesome. The competition gets your blood and adrenaline pumping, and the other drivers are so much fun to be around. Not to mention the ridiculous parties every night! Simply put, you need a REAL VACATION after Bullrun because the rally will kick your ass!
Bill: My favorite aspects are the people you meet. They are one of a kind.
7) What are you looking forward to the most about Bullrun 2010?
Allen: Hanging out with Bullrun veterans Team Texas, Team Twins, Team Oh Canada, Claus, and Rawlings / Collins ,Team Safety Car, Team Lexus, Team Prodigy, and the upcoming Pop Princess Kristine Elezaj and her crazy co-pilot dad Marash and all our new friends from the ’09 rally!
Bill: I can’t say what I am looking forward to the most in 2010 because it might incriminate us.
8) Last year you drove in a decommissioned CHP police cruiser, what cars are you looking into driving this year?
Allen: We have a good idea what it’s going to be…but it’s going to be kept a nice little secret until the launch party in NYC.
Bill: The car I am building is top secret.
9) What did you learn from previous year’s rallies that you might do differently this year to beat Rawlings and Claus?
Allen: That’s a tough one! Every year, we try to step it up, but they manage to step up their game even more! Ever since I teamed up with my brother in the same car, we’ve only had vehicles that could only go no more than 100 mph and those guys will easily do over that! So I’m guessing we’ll need to throw in more gadgets and electronics into our car to give us the edge back. They are really fierce competitors and we love to run with them.
Bill: The last 2 years I didn’t care about winning. I just wanted style, so I drove a slow car. This year we have stepped it up and are bringing a car that will break 100mph, unlike the last 2 years.
10) Last year you guys were always up to no good with your pranking. Can we expect the same this year?
Allen: Common now… this is Team Wu you’re talking about! Of course we’ll be up to no good! Every year the rivalries and pranks get bigger and better!
Bill: Can’t comment on this question. It might incriminate. LOL!
11) What was your favorite prank that you pulled on another Bullrun team last year?
Allen: My favorite prank had to be when I called my good friend who is a Highway Patrol Officer to pull over Team Texas and detain them on the side of the highway for 20 minutes, only to hand them a piece of paper at the end saying “You’ve been punked by Team Wu”. They filmed the entire thing and it was CLASSIC!
Bill: Team Texas getting pulled by the Texas highway patrol was my favorite.
12) Other than yourselves, who is your favorite Bullrun team? Why?
Allen: There are way too many great teams and people to pick a favorite. But if I would have to select just 1, I would say Team Texas. They love to cause trouble and chaos as much as we do. And whenever we are together, you definitely know something crazy is about to go down!
Bill: We love all the teams, especially the girl teams.
13) What is your team's strongest asset?
Allen: Bill’s aggressive driving and my NASA-like navigating skills.
Bill: Our strongest asset is luck. I am one lucky mother fucker!
14) If you could choose one word to describe Bullrun, what would it be?