Who’s doing “the full fandango”?

According to MINI Takes The States tonight, 99 people are signed up to drive the full coast-to-coast MTTS route – that seems like a LOT of people prepared to drive a one-way-trip across the USA!
I can understand that some folks (like me) are picking up a car in Monterey and bringing it back … also there are some MINI USA folks signed up to do the whole drive … and some of the names on the list are duplicates or I know have pulled out … but that still leaves a lot of people … and what about all those folks from California and other west coast cities? Do they drive all the way back again when they reach Connecticut?

Here’s the full list tonight, pruned for duplicates and known no-shows, and with the MINI USA folks marked. If your name’s here, let’s hear your story 🙂
George H, Orange Beach,AL
MAX M, MAX,AP
Carey H, Glendale,AZ
Andrew Y, San Francisco,CA
Barry H, Oceanside,CA
Bianca S, Winnetka,CA
Corey W, Yuba City,CA
Cy R, lake elsinore,CA
Felicia D, Sylmar,CA
Fireball Tim!, Malibu,CA
Gary A, Los Altos,CA
Gracie, Escondido,CA
Hee J N, Glendale,CA
Jeffrey d, Los Angeles,CA
Jim V, Stockton,CA
Jirawan, Corona,CA
JOHN V, GLENDALE,CA
Katherine N, San Jose,CA
loretta b, lynwood,CA
Lynda R, Oakland,CA
moke girl, Hemet,CA
Nick G, Santa Ana,CA
roberto a, LA,CA
Ron F, San Francisco,CA
Scott C, Shafter,CA
Vanessa R, La Puente,CA
Vic W, Yuba City,CA
Howard O, Denver,CO
SleepinDogs, Boulder,CO
steven s, parker,CO
Melanie S, Washignton,DC
Richard C, Camden,DE
Ciprian M, Oviedo,FL
Julie C, Gainesville,FL
Masahisa O, N. Lauderdale,FL
Mike G, Windermere,FL
Pras, Lithia,FL
f p, atlanta,GA
Joseph R, Columbus,GA
Pamela A, Stone Mountain,GA
Allan P, Kailua,HI
MINIhune, Mililani,HI
(MONTEREY) GBMINI, Gloucester,MA
David C, Annapolis,MD
cesar c, xalapa,ver,ME
DAVE CHESLIN, SYLVAN LAKE,MI
Carla H, Kirbyville,MO
Vince R, Joplin,MO
Elaine M M, Center Ossipee,NH
(MINIUSA) Gerry M, Park Ridge,NJ
(MINIUSA) Jim M, Upper Saddle River ,NJ
(MINIUSA) Matthew R, Hoboken,NJ
(MINIUSA) Trudy H, Ringwood,NJ
Andrew P, Fair Lawn,NJ
H. Scott & Lisa F, Northfield,NJ
Johnny Ohhh, West Caldwell,NJ
Julie A, Hackettstown,NJ
MotoringGear, Woodcliff Lake,NJ
ron fletcher s, forked river,NJ
Stephen S, River Vale,NJ
Thomas K, Woodcliff Lake,NJ
Thomas/Pat U, Chatham,NJ
steven r, reno,NV
BCast Diva, Brooklyn,NY
Daniel S, Brooklyn,NY
hyung m, NEW YORK,NY
Jeffrey T, Locust Valley,NY
Richard K, Canton,OH
Lauren K, Portland,OR
David B, Macungie,PA
Charlie A, Greenville,SC
craterdaddy, Nashville,TN
ARMANDO D, LAREDO ,TX
Addison L, Dallas,TX
Irless H, Odessa,TX
steve c, austin ,TX
Deneen V, Chantilly,VA
Jim Ray,Hampton,VA
Jimmy R, Chesterfield,VA
Phil Merrick, Williamsburg,VA
Phyllis M, Williamsburg,VA
Melissa M, Lynnwood,WA
publisher MC2 MINI magazine, bremerton,WA
Richard M, Seattle,WA

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GP press reviews

(following on from the same Adria Raceway event where Paul Mullett tested and wrote a great review)

Some UK press reviews reported in this MINI2 thread, from News Of The World and MSN Cars – here’s a few words from the more positive MSN write-up:
The funky GP, or to give it its ridiculous full moniker, the ‘Mini Cooper S featuring the John Cooper Works GP Kit’, raises a few eyebrows and will not to be everyone’s taste. Carbon fibre rear wing, comprehensive body kit, the limited edition model number blazoned on the roof and the red door mirrors all shout ‘look at me’.
It all looks very track-day focussed but that’s far from the full story. Certainly it works well on the circuit … The GP turns in instantly and can be made to track accurately from clipping point to apex and out again.
The ‘Mini Cooper S featuring the John Cooper Works GP Kit’ isn’t the raw performance car, the Mini version of a 911GT3, that some had hoped for. Instead it is a more comfortable, more useable compromise but a car that feels rather special for all that.

Continue reading GP press reviews

GP roof number

At MINIsOnTop last weekend, Paul Macerone of MINI USA said USA GP buyers wouldn’t get their roof number till delivery – meanwhile many Europe buyers have their roof number already! See this MINI2 thread.

Well apparently Pauls information was inaccurate – I received a letter today confirming me as “among a select group of MINI Cooper S with John Cooper Works GP Kit owners”:
As you’d expect of a limited-edition work of art [sic], every [GP] has its own unique number. The evidence is there in black and white on the roof and the dashboard [I didn’t think that the number was on the dashboard, only the letters GP]. Only 415 of these cars will be distributed in the United States, and one of these vehicles will be yours … Your unique series number is GP 0203

I can’t think of anything very exciting about the number 0203, but anyway …

The Paul Mullett GP write-up

Following Pauls trip to the Adria Raceway for the GP press launch, he has posted a great write-up with more excellent GP pictures over on his MINI2 website:
PaulTestsGP.jpg

The Works GP isn’t a hardcore track day car … an obvious compromise to many when the final specifications were revealed in detail, 218hp and a reduction in weight of 50kg failed to impress many previously excited MINI enthusiasts … it’s not all just about facts and figures …
… one aspect of the evolution of the vehicle to continue beyond the basics of power and weight was the aerodynamics and suspension of the car … suspension is 10mm lower than standard, and the damper settings are around 50% firmer, based on the John Cooper Works sports suspension accessory option, then tweaked and tuned … The rear spoiler creates downforce and a low pressure area out behind of the rear of the vehicle …

The Works GP isn’t the most powerful MINI I’ve driven, but the combination of modifications add up pretty much perfectly and made driving the GP a real pleasure. As impressed as I was, it’s very hard to tell how good a particular MINI is without a fair comparison. So I found myself in the fortunate and rather privileged position of driving the one other John Cooper Works MINI Cooper S in attendance around the course back to back with the Works GP for a fair comparison. When I took out the “regular” Works Car (complete with accessory spoiler, suspension, brakes and so on) I was immediately convinced that the GP car really was “that good”.

Read the complete write-up on MINI2 for even more enthusiasm! 🙂

Early delivery rumours

From Chief_Charlie on this MINI2 post:
Heard that the GP’s were discussed at the Regional Sales Manager’s meeting in South Carolina this past week. There are approx 80 GP’s to be delivered at both locations, pretty evenly split between the 2 locations. The GP Delivery Program has been closed out, and no one else can apply. So, sounds like there will be a good number of folks West and East, which is good for us (and good for MINI)

MINI Mania & Monterey

A press release from MINI Mania says a few interesting things about the Monterey event
… Mini Mania will also be participating in the anticipated largest gathering of Mini Cooper in US history. Special parking is being provided for both the original classic Mini and the new generation BMW MINI Cooper. The expected 1,000 owners will be able to not only view an entire week-end of historic races but also to visit the various trade booths …