The MINI JCW Team and MINI USA will start their fourth full season in the Street Tuner class of the Continental Tire SportsCar Challenge series this weekend at the famous high banks of the Daytona International Speedway in Daytona Beach, Fla. The MINI JCW Team kicked off last season by showing the rest of the field that they were a force to be reckoned with after Mat Pombo and co-driver Derek Jones drove the #73 MINI JCW to victory lane at the track known as the “World Center of Racing.”
The MINI JCW Team and MINI USA completed their second full season competing in the Street Tuner class of the Continental Tire SportsCar Challenge series with a hard-fought final race of the season on Friday at Road Atlanta. The team qualified P9, P10 and P11 after an early morning qualifying session on Friday. The #73 MINI JCW driven by Jones and Pombo had a strong day, starting 10th and quickly climbing through the field to put the team in seventh place. With under 10 minutes left in the race, a caution came out to pack up the field which gave Pombo a great opportunity to gain position before the checkered flag. As the field prepared to take the final restart, the third, fourth and fifth place cars collided. Pombo maneuvered through the wreckage to emerge in 3rd place.
Mini has crowned its lineup with a second-generation version of the John Cooper Works. Shown just over a week ahead of an official unveiling at the Geneva motor show, the new go-fast Mini is planned to head to the United States in August in two distinct body styles in a move aimed at seeing it appeal to as wide an audience as possible. As with the second generation of the Mini Cooper S–on sale in North America since 2007, buyers will be able to choose between a standard two-door or roomier three-door Clubman at $28,550 and $30,800, respectively. Both models run the same turbocharged 1.6-liter four-cylinder direct injection gasoline engine–the result of a joint venture between Mini parent company, BMW, and French car maker Peugeot.