Rather than following the crowds at the recent New Range Rover Sport launch in New York, we hooked up with film maker Diz Williams and headed off behind the scenes at the James A. Farley Post Office in Midtown Manhattan.
The plan was quite simple: approach the exclusive global reveal of the all new Range Rover Sport in a slightly left-field manner and bring you a story different to any other media outlets. The usual story involves the following: a flight to a far-flung country, accommodation in a beautiful hotel, evening events, drinks, canapés and continual questioning from senior automotive brand executives asking for your valued feedback on the product in question.
Land Rover usually do it slightly differently, but the main aspects of this list were still there for the RRS launch. Flights to a far flung destination? Check. Mind you, who is going to complain about being shoe-horned onto a jet liner bound for Manhattan?
After the flight, a gorgeous bedroom in the rather swanky Trump SoHo. No complaints so far. Just to twist the knife in a little, all you jealous types, the shot of the New York skyline above was shot from the palatial bathroom of said yummy bedroom, in which I’d be holed up for three days.
Right, back to the story in hand. The planned schedule, placed in front of the throng of journos from the Middle East was quite simple and as always, executed to perfection. But I wanted more. I wanted something different. A chance meeting with two gentlemen by the names of Jason Barlow and Diz Williams, while consuming nicotine outside the hotel, led to an opportunity I can’t believe I initially questioned taking part in.
Jason (serial motoring journalist and broadcaster, who you might recognise from early Top Gear episodes) and Diz (a kick-ass film guy) were in town to create a behind-the-scenes documentary of the whole launch. They had already been in New York three weeks previously during the early stages of filming and had flown back to the USA to capture the evening’s launch activities along with a few other bits and bobs.
So as we stood there, freezing our bits off in Soho, the offer of joining the guys on the night was thrown out there. “I’m in” was the immediate response, as you can imagine.
Throw in a very short night’s sleep, pre-reveal activities held at the stunning Centre548 the next day and a rushed wander round the shops of Broadway and there I was stood back outside the hotel, ready to rock. Diz had his Blackmagic camera primed and our Range Rover taxi was ready to usher us downtown.