Mini unveils big plans for rallying

Dinesh

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Dinesh

500 RPM
Senior Member
Oct 13, 2006
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The return of Mini to the World Rally Championship (WRC) stage is in the final stages as the brand has officially launched the team with less than a month to go before its first WRC event in Italy. The launch revealed the two cars that will be used, the driver teams and of course the marque's plans for rallying in the future.



Based on the production Countryman, the Mini John Cooper Works WRC cars were developed and prepared by rallying specialists prodrive with BMW Motorsport lending a hand too. While British outfit Prodrive handled the chassis and will eventually handle the mini works team as well, BMW Motorsport worked on the 1.6-liter turbocharged engine that will comply with the FIA's S2000 regulations. Prodrive will also be happy to supply the AWD cars to privateer teams in WRC or S2000 guise.



The team will be looking to gain some experience in their debut season this year, with only six rallys on the cards. The plan will be to compete in the full season for 2012 after testing the waters this year. The cars will be driven by Kris Meeke and Dani Sordo with their respective navigators Paul Nagle and Carlos Del Barrio in the passenger's seats.



“We have an experienced team, a talented driver pairing and, most importantly of all, a strong partnership with Mini. We are now eagerly looking forward to demonstrating the performance of the car on its debut in Sardinia in just a few weeks,” said David Richards, the Chief Executive Officer of Prodrive.



The six events that Mini will be taking part in this year are the Rally Italy from May 5-8, Rally Finland from July 28-31, Rally Germany from August 18-21, Rally France from September 29-October 2, Rally Spain from October 20-23 and Raly Great Britain from November 10-13.

We can't wait for the mini to hit the dirt trails and emulate the success of Paddy Hopkirk, Timo Mäkinen and Rauno Aaltonen at the Rally Monte Carlo back in the 60's.



Source: Mini