In a humorously bizarre twist to Turkmenistan's first-ever automotive race, the nation's leader Gurbanguli Berdymukhamedov has won—even though he wasn't scheduled to be on the circuit. The Turkmen President was slated to make an appearance at his fledgeling nation's maiden racing event, and did so in grand style, driving into the Ashgabat stadium in his lime-green Bugatti.
According to the Associated Press, when the race's presenter announced his arrival, the President reportedly asked the bemused man: "Can I take part?", before changing into his racing suit and clambering into a similarly hued Turkish-made Volkicar—it wouldn't have been fair if he had driven his Bugatti, would it?
The President proceeded to clinch the time-trial challenge, and said that he would be donating the winning car (not his Bugatti) to the national sports museum. The stunt appears to have been choreographed to portray the president as a competent and spontaneous man of action. Apparently, in the famously secretive former Soviet Central Asian nation, anything goes.