Team Twins enters the maddness in a "Wolf in Sheep's Clothing!"
What would the Bullrun rally be without Team Twins? That’s a very good question – and I think we’ll never know! Team Twins will be returning once again this year to tear up the roads of America in a car that can only be described as “A Wolf in Sheep’s clothing.”
Team Twins has been a permanent fixture in the Bullrun rally for five years now – with the 2010 rally being their fifth. Nicholas and Annabelle Frankl; brother and sister from London, have been rallying together since 2006 – and have proved to be a force to be reckoned with. Nicholas has been a fixture in the Bullrun ever since its humble beginnings in 2004. Herr Frankl entered the 2004 Bullrun with rally legend; Alex Roy. Together, they formed the infamous Team Polizei! Nicholas and Alex tore up the country from LA to Miami in their Renntech modified Mercedes CL600, determined to beat their ultimate rival – Richard Rawlings! Ever since then, Nicholas has been addicted to Bullrun.
In 2006, Nicholas brought along his twin sister; Annabelle, for the 4000 mile rally across the United States. Together, they drove a 2006 Chevrolet Corvette Z06 from New York to LA. One of the most infamous moments on the 2006 rally occurred on day 3, en-route to Kansas City Missouri. Annabelle was at the wheel of the iconic American sports car when a set of red and blue lights began to flash in her rear-view mirror. Things weren’t looking good for Team Twins, who were at the front of the pack. After much deliberation, the officer decided to cuff Annabelle and haul her down to the county jail. Annabelle made Bullrun history by being the first female Bullrunner to get pulled over and arrested. Getting Annabelle out of jail proved to be costly. The Missouri state police set Annabelle’s bail at $1000.00. Nicholas went out to the nearest ATM machine, withdrew the money and freed his sister from the cockroach-infested prison cell (Note: this is the first and only public record of Frankl ever having cash on him or spending it on Bullrun.) Nicholas and Annabelle were back on the road three hours later!
The Frankl twins returned the following year in a 2007 Corvette Z06 and stormed their way down to Key-West. At the Montreal start line, Team Twins managed to pull their 2007 Corvette Z06 in front of Mr. Angry’s 1968 Dodge Charger at the front of the starting grid – despite waking up hours after everyone else, and arriving at the start line only minutes before the cars were to depart Montreal, Team Twins managed to start the 2007 rally in pole position. Upon getting out of the car, Nicholas infamously claimed that “there are no rules in Bullrun!”
In 2008 they returned in a Mitsubishi Evolution. At the start line in Calgary, Nicholas tried to convince Bullrun organizer; Andy Duncan, to let him park at the front of the starting grid like he did the year before. He argued that he had seniority over the other Bullrunners due to his prior rally experience and multiple rally victories. Unfortunately, Andy was not impressed by this and did not let him park at the front of the grid, so he was forced to park across the street and leave mid-pack.
Last year’s rally was when a rivalry started to heat up between Team Twins and Team Wu. On day 2 of the rally, Bill Wu poured motor oil all over the engine of Team Twins’ Jeep SRT8. When Annabelle pulled the Jeep out of the garage, smoke bellowed from under the hood. When she lifted the hood of the car and saw the motor oil, and the lack of an air-filter, she knew exactly where to point her finger. Later in the rally, Team Wu planted a GPS tracker in Team Twins’ SRT8 so that they could follow Nicholas and Annabelle if they found a quicker route to the next destination. On the last day of the rally, Annabelle had enough of Wu’s antics, and with the help of a fellow Bullrunner, placed a wheel-clamp on Team Wu’s police cruiser. The key to “the clamp” was hidden so that Team Wu would have to scramble to get their car on the road.
Team Twins made it to the final checkpoint in Austin, TX ahead of Wu and celebrated their victory in true Bullrun fashion – by grabbing a bottle of champagne and spraying their fellow Bullrunners until their clothes were soaked in alcohol.
So what are Nicholas and Annabelle driving this year? They will be piloting a 2010 Cadillac CTS-V!
Bullrunners, keep your eyes on Team Twins this year because they will be stepping up their game! Will you?
Click here to see more photos of Team Twins and the CTS-V as well as the Team Twins interview!
Team Twins Photo Shoot with the CTS-V:
Interview with Nicholas and Annabelle Frankl:1) So Annabelle, this is your fifth Bullrun rally, what was your motivation to do the Bullrun the first time around in 2006?
I’ve grown up around cars, my father did the last, real Cannonball Run (and came dead last) and Nicholas has done too many car rallies to count! I’ve written about cars, done TV shows about cars, so wanting to do the rally was never an issue, it was just getting the time off work. Thankfully, I joined the entrepreneurial world at the end of 2005 and that allowed me to make my own schedule which, of course, included Bullrun.
2) So Nicholas, this is your seventh Bullrun rally, what was your motivation to do the Bullrun the first time around in 2004?
I wanted to dress up in a German police uniform and have control of a RENNTECH CL500 with 550bhp and a BIG loud megaphone. Oh + I wanted to beat C. Ettzenbergererhausenstein – but he wimped out.
3) Nicholas, you are one of very few Bullrunners that have stuck around since the very beginning. Which year of Bullrun was your favourite? Why?
2005. Best driving roads ever. Numchucks bus was a rolling riot each evening. Had use of Jaguar XK convertible and Dodge Viper from Jason at Blowfish Sushi. Unlimited power and unlimited roads through Utah. Also I wanted to beat C. Ettzenbergererhausenstein – but again he could get his turbine bosch washing machine to the start line.
4) Annabelle, what was your first impression of Bullrun when you showed up at the start line in 2006?
It was all a bit overwhelming. There were so many cars on the rally in 2006, so many people, many of whom already knew each other, and a lot of really big personalities, I definitely knew it was going to be unlike anything else I’d ever done. Of course, Nicholas being a rally veteran certainly helped. He told me to take it easy because even though it’s “only” a week, it’s the longest 7 days of your life! How right he was.
5) Nicholas, what was your first impression of Bullrun when you showed up at the start line in 2004?
HOLY SHIT – how did Andy and Dave pull this off and who is going to shtooop Paris Hilton first?
6) What made you want to return this year for Bullrun 2010?
Annabelle: Simply put, it’s the most fun I have all year. And I have a LOT of fun, doing some very cool things, all over the world. I would not ever want to miss it and, if I ever did, I would be seriously depressed knowing it was going on without me.
Nicholas: I love the camaraderie – dear friends driving across a great country on a daily adventure of high speed chaos and mayhem. Did I mention I want to beat Claus and his quad turbo Dyson with 28inch Chinese knock off rims??
7) Last year your team drove a Jeep SRT8. What is the vehicle of choice this year?
Annabelle: I’m really excited because we’re re-teaming with our good friends at GM for 2010. We’ve ‘represented’ for Corvette in the past (love that Z06!) but this year Team Twins will be bringing a bit more class to the party with a 2010 Cadillac CTS-V. Talk about a wolf in sheep’s clothing; this thing has 556 HP, 551 lb-ft and has a top speed of 191mph! It’s basically a de-tuned ZR1 motor - ‘nuff said :-) And the best thing is it will fly totally under the radar; it’s a stealth rally car, which is just the way we like it.
Nicholas: Cadillac is entering a CTS V-SPEC team and support team – just to make sure the Nintendo WII’s (WU’s) and Claus Ettzenbergererhausenstein’s know who they are dealing with. Real American muscle. All 556BHP
8) Last year you had a bit of fun at the expense of Team Wu by installing a boot on their car to get back at them for their pranking. How will you protect yourselves from further sabotage by the Wu’s this year?
Annabelle: OMFG – I can only imagine what tricks those damn Wu brothers have up their sleeves!!! If there was a government contract for rally sabotage, they would win it hands down! Honestly, I didn’t even bring that boot, it belonged to someone else who, apparently, intended to boot our Jeep but it wouldn’t fit over the wheels. So, it ended up getting ‘stored’ in our car and, after all the dirty tricks from Team Swine Flu, it was time for some payback. You know, if they really feel that they need to sabotage us, then go ahead. I’m surprised they think we’re that much of a force to be reckoned with! I’m just a nice, English girl who doesn’t go in for that sort of sneaky behaviour (unless it’s retaliatory!) You should be able to win because you out-drive everyone, not because you out-Bullrun them. Then again, that’s all part of doing the rally.
Nicholas: AK 47, couple of tazer’s and a couple of covert ex Mosad buddies – they hate guys like WU.
9) What is your absolute favourite aspect of Bullrun?
Annabelle: My fellow Bullrunners, hands down. The people make it what it is and are what set it apart from the other rallies. It may not be the biggest but I’m all for quality over quantity. Anyone can fill the starting grid with a bunch of tossers; getting the right mix is something that Andy & Dave pride themselves on and, I believe, is what keeps people coming back year after year.
Nicholas: Claus Ettzenbergererhausenstein and watching him trying in vain to get pass me, with small amounts of high pressure steam escaping from his cute ears, followed closely by watching stinky WU being pulled over in that garbage truck he drives.
10) What are you looking forward to the most about Bullrun 2010?
Annabelle: There are so many things. Obviously, seeing old friends and meeting new ones. Driving on fantastic roads that you would never otherwise drive on. I’ve loved criss-crossing this country and every year we get to see new parts of it. I think I’m up to 39 states now and I love adding new ones to the tally every year. The camaraderie, the story-telling; every day there’s a different tale of who got out of what ticket or managed to dodge which radar trap or who drove at what speed. And, of course, the parties are usually pretty epic.
Nicholas: Passing C. Ettzenbergererhausenstein on the inside at any speed and especially on the track – where the V-spec will kick German and WU butt.
11) Are you planning on gunning for the Navigator Award this year, or are you taking the laid-back - Bullrun is a vacation approach?
Annabelle: First off, Bullrun and vacation are not two words that can co-exist in the same sentence. Bullrun would kick vacation’s a** every time! A vacation is what you need after you’re done with the rally. And what do you mean Navigator Award?! How come you’re not asking if we’re gunning for the Always First Award?! If there’s a serious track event & prize, I have absolute faith – given a track-competitive car – that Nicholas will take home that trophy. As for the other awards, you’ll just have to wait and see.
Nicholas: I’m only really interested in rubbing their noses in it as I lap the track 4-6 seconds faster than all the testosterone Muppets. That’s where the skill comes in.
12) Other than yourselves, who is your favourite Bullrun team? Why?
Annabelle: I couldn’t possibly pick 1 favourite, that would be like “Sophie’s Choice” or something. In no particular order: Team Oh! Canada, Team Safety Car, Team CEC, Team Gas Monkey, Team Riecke, Team Elezaj, Team Angry, Team R8, Team Wu, Team Prodigy, Team Black Magic, Team Texas, Team SLR. What can I say, they’re all fabulous people and they’re the unique ingredients that combine to make a really amazing Bullrun recipe.
Nicholas: Team OH WHY THE HELL ARE THEY HERE AGAIN - CANADA
13) What is your team's strongest asset?
Annabelle: Foreign driving licenses and the whole ‘we don’t even need to speak to know what the other one means’ Twins thing.
Nicholas: Gold Bullion (my sister is also a bit of a special asset and quite strong)
14) If you could choose one word to describe Bullrun, what would it be?
15) Annabelle, you were the very first female Bullrunner in history to get pulled over and get arrested. Describe that experience.
I could tell that the officer was very conflicted about arresting me; he was off on his cell phone for a good 20 minutes before he asked me to “step to the back of the car, please ma’am”. Basically, if you hear those words, you know you’re going to jail. I remember the ride to the jail was THE MOST BORING CAR RIDE EVER! Have you ever driven anywhere, at 25mph, for 1 hour???!!! Especially, after just cruising at 100mph more than that. I really don’t recommend it. Then I got processed, fingerprints, mugshot and all that good stuff. And then, because my illustrious brother was taking so goddamn long to get the $1000 bail together (not enough money in the first ATM, apparently, followed by lots of media whoring for the Bullrun TV camera), I got locked into an 8 x 10 breezeblock cell, with flickering overhead fluorescent lights and 17 dead cockroaches (yes, I counted them) on the floor and basically paced back and forth for 2 hours. I finally hit the intercom button to say ‘don’t I get a phone call?’ (cool!) and was eventually released, but not before the processing officer printed out and gave me my mugshot. I made a t-shirt for the 2007 rally with “Got Bail?” on the front and my mugshot on the back :-) I have to say, I’m very proud to still hold that record (my parents less so...) and I hope it stays a club of one for a little while longer. However, now that I’m in it, I don’t feel the need to renew my membership.