THAME businessman, Alun Rowe, doesn’t normally take calls from unfamiliar numbers on his mobile. But on this occasion he’s extremely glad he did. Two weeks ago the web developer was told by the on-line supercar competition company ‘Best of the Best’ that he had won the top prize in their online spot-the-ball game.
When I got the call from BOTB, I initially thought it was just a marketing call
How he won
“When I got the call from BOTB, I initially thought it was just a marketing call,” Alun admitted. “I first saw ‘Best of the Best’ at an airport stall in 2003, but the cost of a ticket to play back then was too expensive - around £50 or £60. When this year I saw they had come down, I brought 15 tickets for £20. I entered back in June without really expecting to win, so I’m still gobsmacked by the news.”
It would not be too much of an exaggeration to say that this was a dream come true for Alun, who alongside his day job as a web developer is a self-confessed petrol head and sports car enthusiast. Yet despite this, as he and his wife have a young family, he confesses he was tempted to choose the £25,000 offered instead of the Porsche out of the range of prizes offered. It was only after talks with both his wife and representatives from the company about the range of options available that they decided to go for the car.
“It actually works out better for us as a family financially to have the Porsche,” Rowe maintains. “The model I’ve chosen is worth about £40,000, so if we ever needed the money we could sell it. But at the end of the day I entered with the dream of winning a car, and so I decided to take it.” He smiles. “My wife was very supportive of my decision.”
Rowe was then invited to view a series of available models at the Porsche London headquarters in Twickenham. “The people have been lovely – every step of the way they were ringing me to ensure all was fine, and I never felt them put any pressure on me to make a decision one way or the other.”
When asked if he ever suspected the call might be a scam, or a cruel joke by some of his friends, Alun insists that the details of it were too precise; no-one else besides BOTB could have known the information about exactly which contests he had entered and when. As such, many who were convinced it was fraudulent on the web forums Alun frequents became instant converts to ‘Best of the Best’ when he uploaded pictures of the car for all to see on his blog.
Unsurprisingly, Alun can’t wait to collect his Porche next week and is eager to have the full day offered by BOTB at Silverstone learning how to utilise all the functions before taking his new vehicle out on the road. However, exhibiting it on the way to work doesn’t seem to be a priority for Alun. Instead, his first port of call will be driving it round to friends and family. “I have about 30 people who asked to see it after they heard the news, so after I collect it I know I’m going to be drinking a lot of tea!”
And some champagne surely?
He laughs. “Well, that’ll be for afterwards when I’m out of the car.”
Either way, he won’t be alone – many proud (and envious) locals will surely be toasting his success.
For information about The Best of the Best’s contests and give-aways, see Alun’s blog: LINK
Follow Alun Rowe on Twitter: LINK