Prodrive WRC Team

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
Prodrive
Full name Prodrive WRC Team
Base England Banbury, United Kingdom
Team principal(s) David Richards
Drivers United Kingdom Kris Meeke[1]
Spain Dani Sordo[2]
Co-drivers Republic of Ireland Paul Nagle[1]
Spain Carlos del Barrio[2]
Chassis Mini John Cooper Works WRC
Tyres Michelin
World Rally Championship career
Debut 2011
Constructors' Championships 0
Drivers' Championships 0
Rally wins 0

The Prodrive WRC Team, formerly known as the Mini WRC Team was the name given to the World Rally Championship (WRC) team run by Prodrive. Prodrive developed the car, the Mini John Cooper Works WRC, in cooperation with MINI.[3]

Mini in rallying[edit]

Timo Mäkinen driving to victory in the 1965 1000 Lakes Rally

Mini's history in international rallying dates back to the 1960s, when the Mini Cooper S won the legendary Monte Carlo Rally on three occasions, in 1964, 1965 and 1967, as well as wins on the Acropolis Rally, RAC Rally and 1000 Lakes Rally,[4] and the European Rally Championship in 1965.

Previous Mini rally cars includes the Mini 850, which was first driven to victory by Pat Moss.[5]

Formation[edit]

Reports began emerging in mid-2009 that Mini, now owned by BMW, was planning a return to rallying. The reports went even further when Prodrive said that it would not field an entry for the 2011 Formula One season, in order to focus on a return to rallying.[6]

On 27 July 2010, Mini ended months of speculation by confirming its rally programme in cooperation with Prodrive. The team, the factory-supported Mini WRC Team, would compete at six rounds of the 2011 World Rally Championship season, ahead of a full season from 2012 onwards. The team set a target of winning the World Rally Championship in 2013.[7]

Team[edit]

Mini World Rally Car[edit]

Dani Sordo heading to a third place at the 2011 Rallye Deutschland

Reports had emerged before the rally team was founded that the car was being planned. When the rally team was confirmed BMW confirmed that the car would be used on a limited schedule in the 2011 World Rally Championship. Prodrive confirmed that work on the Mini WRC started in late 2010.

Operations[edit]

The team was based at Prodrive's facilities in Banbury, previously the base of the Subaru World Rally Team.[5] The team principal was David Richards, along with co-principal Glen Coates.

History[edit]

2011[edit]

The team signed Kris Meeke, a former IRC rally champion, as one of its rally drivers.[8][9] In January 2011 the second driver was announced and Dani Sordo signed up for the season.[2] The team competed at six rounds with both drivers, achieving two podiums in Germany and France with Sordo.

2012[edit]

Almost since the team launch in 2011, there was unease between BMW and Prodrive concerning the financing of the programme, to the extent that Mini WRC Team had to shelve plans to run two official drivers in 2012.[10] Dani Sordo was confirmed, while Kris Meeke was replaced by Pierre Campana. At the 2012 Monte Carlo Rally Sordo managed a second place overall.

In February, after only one race, BMW terminated its contract with Prodrive. The team had to change its name in Prodrive WRC Team. A new works-team was formed as WRC Team Mini Portugal from the merger of the Mini entries of Armindo Araújo World Rally Team and Palmeirinha Rally, which were both run by the Motorsport Italia firm. Team Mini Portugal was registered as a manufacturer entry, while the new Prodrive WRC Team was demoted to a works-supported private entry.[11] The team reduced its programme to seven rounds with Sordo, while the second car was entered in some events by different drivers.

WRC results[edit]

Year Car No Driver 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 WDC Points WMC Points
2011 Mini John Cooper Works WRC 37 Spain Dani Sordo SWE MEX POR JOR ITA
6
ARG GRE FIN
Ret
GER
3
AUS FRA
2
ESP
4
GBR
20
8th 59 -* -*
52 United Kingdom Kris Meeke SWE MEX POR JOR ITA
Ret
ARG GRE FIN
Ret
GER
Ret
AUS FRA
Ret
ESP
5
GBR
4
11th 25
2012 Mini John Cooper Works WRC 23 Finland Jarkko Nikara MON SWE MEX POR ARG GRE NZL FIN GER GBR FRA ITA ESP
5
16th 10 - NC
37 Spain Dani Sordo MON
2
SWE
Ret
MEX POR
11
ARG GRE NZL
6
FIN GER
9
GBR FRA
Ret
ITA ESP
9
11th 35
52 France Pierre Campana MON
7
21st 6
Sweden Patrik Sandell SWE
8
MEX POR
Ret
ARG GRE NZL FIN GER GBR FRA ITA ESP 27th 4
2013 Mini John Cooper Works WRC 23 Finland Jarkko Nikara MON SWE
25
MEX POR ARG GRE ITA FIN
Ret
GER AUS FRA ESP GBR - 0 - -
  • Mini entered in 2011 season as development entry, therefore they could not score points as a team.

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b Cary, Tom (30 September 2010). "IRC champion Kris Meeke set to drive Mini WRC in World Rally Championship". telegraph.co.uk. London: The Daily Telegraph. Retrieved 1 December 2010. 
  2. ^ a b c "MINI has ended weeks of speculation by confirming that Dani Sordo will drive for its new WRC Team in the 2011 FIA World Rally Championship.". WRC.com. 5 January 2011. Retrieved 5 January 2011. 
  3. ^ "Mini to compete in the World Rally Championship". The Guardian. London: Guardian Media Group. 2010-07-27. Retrieved 2010-07-27. 
  4. ^ "Welcome back to MINI!". World Rally Championship. International Sportsworld Communicators. 2010-07-27. Retrieved 2010-07-27. 
  5. ^ a b "The Oxford-built Mini makes World Rally come back". BBC News. BBC. 2010-07-27. Retrieved 2010-07-27. 
  6. ^ "Prodrive not submitting 2011 F1 entry". GPUpdate.net. GPUpdate. 2010-04-15. Retrieved 2010-07-27. 
  7. ^ "Mini aim to win world title within three years". Eurosport. TF1 Group. 2010-07-27. Retrieved 2010-07-27. [dead link]
  8. ^ Autosport http://www.autosport.com/news/report.php/id/86310.  Missing or empty |title= (help)
  9. ^ Autosport http://www.autosport.com/news/report.php/id/87429.  Missing or empty |title= (help)
  10. ^ Evans, David (2 February 2012). "BMW set to terminate Prodrive contract to run the Mini WRC team". Autosport.com. Haymarket Publications. Retrieved 19 December 2016. 
  11. ^ Evans, David (6 February 2012). "Prodrive loses status as MINI's factory World Rally Team". Autosport.com. Haymarket Publications. Retrieved 6 February 2012. 

External links[edit]