Manual Mini Set For Endurance Racing

In a previous post, we mentioned how Mini seems to be doing its bit to save the manual, with a driving school experience that is designed to get younger drivers to love the manual shift.

Well, now they have added to this commitment to keep manuals at the forefront of production by partnering with Bulldog Racing to run two cars at the Nurburgring 24-hour endurance event – one of which will have. manual transmission.

Details are sketchy and some of the information comes via the TopGear website. What we do know is that the driving will be undertaking – and enjoyed no doubt – by a team of talented Brits. One member is Brit racer Charlie Cooper, who is the grandson of John Cooper. Automotive historians won’t need telling that John Cooper is a key figure in the racing history of Mini.

The manual will be competing in class VT2-FWD, this a category for “lightly-modified 2.0-litre turbo production cars”.

The nature of endurance racing means it is very hard to predict any likely outcome, though the pedigree of the team suggests a string finish is certainly possible. A victory for the manual Mini in its class would be a lovely reminder of just how compelling a high-class manual transmission can be.

Across 24-hours, there are a lot of gear shifts to be made, those better at maths than use can work it out (though at least most of the time the car will be speeding along, rather than working through first and second).

But, for us, making those manual shifts sounds a great option over relying solely on automatic, it might also help to keep drivers more in the moment and focussed on their driving – important when fatigue may set in but you are racing at high speeds.

The race is being held later in May – we hope to bring you an update and, for fans of classic British racing and manuals – good news.


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