Rally rolls through Steamboat Springs
Steamboat Springs — It’s not a car. It’s a lifestyle. And the goldRush Rally that rolled through Steamboat Springs wasn’t just a drive, explained Bryan Salamone, a long-term participant in the event. It’s an experience.
Salamone soaked up that experience Monday afternoon, munching on Tex-Mex in downtown Steamboat Springs as hundreds of locals and tourists ogled the long line of luxury sports cars, parked on Lincoln Avenue. Steamboat was a pit stop for the Las Vegas-to-New York City drive, and the street was filled with glittering high-end automobiles — Corvettes and Lamborghinis, Porsches and Rolls Royces.
And Salamone loved every second.
“You don’t drive a chrome Lamborghini if you’re not comfortable with people gawking,” he said, with dark sunglasses, slicked-back hair and a wide grin.
The goldRush Rally bills itself as “the premier automotive lifestyle rally” and started Sunday in Las Vegas. It stopped that night in Park City, Utah, then cruised down U.S. Highway 40, taking a lunch pit stop in Steamboat Springs on Monday before heading to Denver for the night.
A flight awaits drivers at that point, to Chicago, where they plan to pick up the drive with stops in Cleveland and Washington, D.C., before hitting the Big Apple.
“We’re a bunch of people who enjoy cars,” said Josh Schwartz, a passenger in one of the vehicles. “We love driving across the country and through towns like this and seeing the beautiful scenery.”
Word of the rally actually reached Steamboat Springs before any of the cars. News was relayed over the police scanner as officers reacted to reports of a long stream of “race cars.” According to scanner traffic, one car was pulled over west of Steamboat for going 91 miles per hour. A Corvette was stopped briefly by two police cars just past the intersection of U.S. Highway 40 and Routt County Road 129.
The driver was warned to keep his speed in check.
“They’re fast cars, and some people are going to drive them fast,” Schwartz said with a shrug. “Everyone is an adult here. Someone might open it up to maybe 70. I don’t think anyone has passed 70 yet.”
Salamone admitted some drivers could give in to the temptation of all that horsepower — “usually when you haven’t seen another car in two hours,” he said.
He said it’s not about driving fast, however. It’s not a race, and the only prize given during the event is a “spirit award.”
“It will change your life,” he said of the drive. “It’s so extreme than when people ask how was it, I can’t even describe it, just like how people can’t describe war or the greatest day of their life. There are so many experiences, so many interesting things that happen. It’s indescribable.”
Soon, the group left, leaving teenage boys standing on the street curb drooling and men and women of all ages still snapping photos.
Salamone hopped back in his car and pulled into traffic. His car roared as he got up to speed.
He offered a bit of advice before he left.
“Law, medicine, real estate or finance, or the wild card is to own your own business,” the New York divorce attorney said, detailing the best ways to join the parade. “Don’t get married until after the age of 35. No drugs. No alcohol and do your homework.”
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STEAMBOAT SPRINGS — Just inside the doors of Kevin Dietrich’s Natural Exposure Gallery in downtown Steamboat Springs, there are moose, bears and some of the town’s most scenic landscapes captured in perfect light.