Official: MINI Wins the Dakar Third Year Straight, Takes Entire Podium

Joan “Nani” Roma wins the 2014 Dakar Rally // Three MINI ALL4 Racing cars on the podium.

Official Release: He has done it! Joan “Nani” Roma (ES) in the yellow MINI ALL4 Racing has won the 2014 Dakar Rally. The Monster Energy X-raid Team driver finished the toughest rally challenge in the world just 5:32 minutes in front of his teammate Stéphane Peterhansel (FR) in the black MINI ALL4 Racing. Nasser Al-Attiyah (QT) in the predominantly white MINI ALL4 Racing finished 3rd. The podium was firmly in hand of the MINI cars, which once again proved to be reliable and fast throughout the whole event.

It was the first win for Nani Roma in a car at the Dakar Rally. The Spaniard had already won the event on a motorbike when it was still held in North Africa in 2004. “I’m so relieved and happy,” Roma said. “It was my big goal to win the Dakar not only on a motorbike but also in a car. A dream came true for me and I want to thank everybody at X-raid and MINI for their great work!”

Roma, who has been leading the overall classification at this year’s event for nine days, winning two stages in total, continued: “The MINI ALL4 Racing is a brilliant car and was extremely reliable and quick throughout the whole rally. It was fun to drive! Also a big thank you to my co-driver Michel Périn, who was a great navigator again! A great result for MINI, now it’s time to celebrate!”

Dakar 2014

The 2014 Dakar Rally was one of the toughest of all time. The 9,374 km-long route led from Rosario (AR) across the Andes and the challenging Atacama desert to Valparaíso (CL) at the Pacific coast. The drivers had to face a lot of different weather conditions and soils. Gravel in the Andes and a lot of extremely fine sand in the hot Atacama desert. MINI mastered all the challenges and won 11 of the 13 stages. It was the third win in a row since MINI made its debut at the Dakar Rally in 2011.

The great reliability of the MINI ALL4 Racing, which is based on the MINI John Cooper Works Countryman, was underlined by the fact that all eleven cars that had started into the event crossed the finish line in Valparaíso. Seven of them finished in the top-ten, including the ones of Monster Energy X-raid Team Orlando Terranova/Paulo Fiúza (AR/PT), who finished 5th overall, and Krzysztof Holowczyc/Konstantin Zhiltsov (PL/RU), who crossed the line 6th overall.

MINI at the 2014 Dakar Rally.
A total of eleven MINI ALL4 Racing compete in the 2014 Dakar. All are based on the MINI John Cooper Works Countryman, modified by the factory-supported X-raid Team to meet the high demands of the Dakar Rally which is today’s pinnacle of off-road motorsports. With a combination of power, reliability and efficiency the MINI ALL4 Racing proved its competiveness right from its first Dakar start in 2011 while also winning the hearts of the fans from the word go. On only its second Dakar appearance, the MINI ALL4 Racing made the big breakthrough by winning the 2012 Dakar Rally. In 2013 the MINI brand proved that its Dakar success was no flash in the pan by defending its title at the first attempt.

Source: MINI

  • Poland_Power

    They forgot to mention Martin Kaczmarski (POL) who is 23 years old and took 9th place overall driving also a MINI – a great achievement because THIS WAS HIS FIRST DAKAR!

  • James Nolan

    This is starting to become the new Mini’s Monte Carlo! If history is going to repeat itself though, we’ll probably be disqualified by the French later for improper lighting set-ups!

  • JonPD

    Good win though still nothing like the David vs Goliath of the class Mini’s wins in Monte Carlo. All the Dakar cars are light years away from their production models. What made the class wins so cool was they were broadly road cars and the tiny and comparatively underpowered Mini took down the cars that on paper should have won. The classic was also notorious for in stock form thrashing muscle cars of the day and age on countless races.

  • “MINI” sweeps the podium, and 9 of the top 12 places. Insane:

  • bluzeke

    Time for Robbie Gordon to finally consider Downsizing!

  • Wolfgang Gullich

    I have a big problem with the instructions X-Raid gave to Roma, Peterhansel and Al-Attiyah on the 2nd to last day of the race. They were told by the team management to maintain their positions relative to each other which effectively ended the race between the 2 and denied Peterhansel from potentially being able to win his 12 Dakar. When the drivers were told this, Peterhansel was only about 2:15 behind Roma and all 3 drivers were pretty irritated. It is what it is I guess, just think it’s pretty crappy the management gave an order I’d expect out of a NASCAR team.

    • jbkone

      I’m no racer, but I can’t believe he followed instructions. I think I’d have said “F** it. I want to win my 12th!”

      • Well he did come from behind and won the next stage after his “instructions” so there’s no telling who actually followed orders.

  • m8o

    Team Orders Suck!

  • Roberto Ballardini
    • OMG. Someone figured out that race cars aren’t always production based.

      • Well obviously every other car in the Dakar is showroom stock. Obviously.

        • RB

          Lame ass answer. Of course not but… At least most run with a power plant that’s from the manufacturer that is sponsored on the side of the car. Got no problem with them running whatever they want but if it says MINI Cooper run a MINI power plant.

          Glad MINI won though. Haven’t been here in a long time… Gads… same old BS.

        • It’s. 2.0L BMW Group diesel.

      • RB

        Really… Gabe? I think the point is… Not a MINI power plant. Could really care if they run Cadillac’s in a buggy but if the are saying MINI on the side then run a MINI power plant.

        • When has MINI ever had a MINI power plant? The closest they’ve come is the F56 with a BMW Group engine shared with BMWs.

          If you’re that concerned about the production pedigree of this particular MINI rally car, I’d recommend looking at the WRC style MINI Countryman which is slightly closer to stock. Although you may have an issue with the Prince derived engine as it was completely reworked by BMW Motorsports.

        • JonPD

          Most race cars should be labeled as sponsored by XYZ versus being XYZ as they have share a look of the donor car but outside of that shares amazingly little with the production car. This is a great part what made the classic Mini’s win so outstanding as they were largely stock cars. Still enjoy modern racing where any given race car can broadly through any body onto the race car underneath and call itself by the name of the outer shell.

    • Everybody take a drink.

    • EHans

      Way to go X-Raid!