MINI and the Monster Energy X-raid team have got their sights set on defending their FIA World Cup for Cross-Country Rallies title. After two World Cup overall victories in a row, MINI, which won the legendary Dakar Rally with the MINI ALL4 Racing for the third time in a row back in January, is title favourite once again for the 2014 season.
A promising marker for the title defence was put down in the first world cup event of the current season at the Baja Russia in the middle of February. It was here that four MINI ALL4 Racing cars, based on the MINI John Cooper Works Countryman, once again demonstrated their performance and reliability. Vladimir Vasilyev (RU) took second place and the Pole Martin Kaczmarski was fourth. The result is even more impressive given the fact that the Baja Russia was the first Marathon Rally that the MINI ALL4 Racing cars have competed in over snow and ice.
Following a successful title defence at the Dakar Rally by Joan “Nani” Roma (ES), the X-raid team and the MINI brand are confident going into the FIA World Cup for Cross-Country Rallies 2014 season. In the last years, MINI has grown into a real force in the international Marathon Rally sport. A long-standing partnership with the X-raid team is filled with numerous successes, including three overall Dakar Rally crowns in a row.
This year’s World Cup for Cross-Country Rallies consists of ten events in total, including rallies in Egypt, Hungary, Poland, Morocco and Portugal. The fact that there are now three additional rally events on the calendar makes the championship even more challenging. However, MINI and the X-raid team are confident of mastering this challenge and defending their title.
This coming weekend (13-16 March 2014), the Baja Italy will be this season’s second world cup event. MINI and the X-raid team will take to the start in the northeast of Italy with two MINI ALL4 Racing cars, which will be driven by Vladimir Vasilyev and Martin Kaczmarski. A total distance of 608.78 kilometres will be covered in Italy, 378.51 km of which will be stage kilometres.
Race calendar for the FIA World Cup for Cross-Country Rallies:
- 14.02 – 16.02 Baja Russia
- 13.03 – 16.03 Baja Italy
- 03.04 – 04.04 Abu Dhabi Desert Challenge
- 20.04 – 25.04 Cross-Country Rally Qatar
- 18.05 – 25.05 Pharaons Rally Egypt
- 18.07 – 20.07 Baja Aragon
- 14.08 – 17.08 Hungarian Baja
- 28.08 – 30.08 Baja Poland
- 03.10 – 09.10 Rally Morocco
- 30.10 – 02.11 Baja Portugal