Mini Thunder VIII at Thunderhill Raceway – Sunday February 19, 2017

Mini Thunder VIII

Mini Thunder VIIIPresented by Stormin’ Norman Nelson and Hooked On Driving

Hooked On Driving (HOD) and fellow Miniologist Norm Nelson have joined forces for this awesome Mini Thunder XIII – Mini Cooper event taking place at Thunderhill Raceway Park in Willows, California. Niello MINI is the primary sponsor for this event.

Saturday NIGHT, February 18, 2017 – CASINO NIGHT!
Come on out Saturday night and have a blast! Enjoy the festivities we are planning!!! Casino Night and the opportunity to “win” items from our sponsors. You will be able to purchase dinner for you and your guests on our website for $25 per person. Check out our sponsor products. Join Team HOD for additional member benefits.

They will be providing a list of approved Mini dealers and Mini repair shops from Los Angles to Oregon for you to get a free inspection before heading to the track and letting your Mini run wild !!!

Sunday DAY, February 19, 2017 – MINI THUNDER!
This will be the standard HOD day, with some nuances. Four run groups include:

A – Beginner, with coaching available.
B – Intermediate
C – Advanced with Point-by required and
D – Advanced with no point bys.

In addition, there will be sessions throughout the day for those that want to get a “Taste of the Track” to go out with a coach for some hot laps.

Lunch for the driver is included in the registration, and additional lunches can be purchased on site. We will also have helmets available for rent. Additional T-shirts will be $20.

niello-mini-2016Family members, friends, or buddies who won’t be hitting the track can come enjoy the day for FREE, sit in the grandstands, look at some great cool cars (classic Minis and new MINIs both!), buckle in for a hot lap around the track with one of the coaches, and chat it up with your fellow motoring enthusiasts!

This year, participants can register directly through the Hooked On Driving website. If you don’t have an HOD account yet, don’t worry, sign up super easy — pick a user name, password, and enter your email, done!

The package price for this event — at less than $250 — is an unheard of deal. Most HDPE with this level of engagement, instruction, and track time go for around $400 these days. Take it from all of us here at Miniology, the memories and experience are worth every penny!

For more information, contact Teri Barrett at or call 707-495-0374.

About HOD High Performance Professional Driving Schools
Hooked On Driving is a leading provider of performance driving programs, commonly known as an high performance driving experience (HPDE), or high performance driving school (HPDS). These programs are run on Track Days, at regional tracks such as Thunderhill Raceway, Laguna Seca, Reno-Fernley, Pocono, Autobahn Country club, and many others. Visit their website for a complete list of Track day venues. We give drivers of high performance cars and sports cars the opportunity to drive their cars on a race track. During the first sessions a coach will ride in the passenger seat, and teach the driver high performance driving techniques. All new drivers need to participate is a helmet (available rentals), and an inspection to be sure their car is roadworthy. Beginners are given a thorough briefing and are introduced to their coach before they drive their car on the track. The initial “A Group” for beginning HPDE drivers, teaches smoothness, awareness, and driving a proper, safe and efficient line on track. A priority is also placed on learning basic car control skills such as late braking, proper shifting and understanding the concept of the apex of a turn. While A group has significant passing restrictions to maintain a conservative pace, the B – Intermediate, C – Advanced, and D – Race-prepped groups have progressively more flexible passing rules and advanced level coaching. There is NEVER any competition — wheel to wheel or timed laps — in our programs. Hooked on Driving HPDE Programs are safe experiences for all, an enjoyable time for every driver — and to assure that our drivers come away with much more confidence in handling their car in an emergency situation. Hooked On Driving customers frequently are heard saying that they’ve had, “The time of their lives!”.

Miniology site impacted by plugin vulnerability

Hacked? Us?

You may have noticed our recent blog entries had some goofy “Support WordPress” footer text with links to pharma/med sites. This was a result of one of our plugins that had a code vulnerability which was exploited by a bot, in simple terms, someone got a bit of free advertising out of us until it was fixed.

Many thanks to Ian (GBMINI) for taking the time to point out the anomaly, which we were then able to address and fix last night.

What was it?

This exploit was simply a spamvertising bot that added a few links to our footer (which happened to be displayed at the end of each post).

Some 94 php files were tagged and fixed by Wordfence (one of our security plug-ins), the other php files were pruned manually by our team of super-hawt hacker geeks that take care of such things for us. 😉

Nobody’s info was compromised, heck, we can barely keep track of our own email addresses, skype ID’s and phone numbers offline, let alone storing anything of yours on the site (which we don’t!)

If you’ve used the online store (ExpressionGraphix is on hiatus, btw) or sent comments to us, none of that information was shared with anyone outside of Miniology staff.

However, now all is well again, and we’ve locked down the site with fresh updates to the core files, as well deployed an even stronger CAPTCHA challenge routine, just because, you know, we like to keep up on that sort of thing.

Thanks for your attention, sorry for any inconvenience, and motor on!

Christopher “StarLord” Calhoun


IMM 2015: MINI Fans meet in Lithuania for the first time. (Day 1 report from BMW Press Group)

IMM2014(from BMW Press, Munich)

Small car, big party: For more than five decades, enthusiasts from all over the world have been sharing their passion for the classic Mini. And once a year they celebrate the iconic British car at a very special event: the International Mini Meeting (IMM).

From 21 to 25 May 2015, classic Mini drivers and enthusiasts will meet in Lithuania for the first time. The picturesque lakeside scenery around Zarasia in the north-east of the Baltic state will be the setting for the IMM 2015 where visitors from all over Europe are expected.

The MiniPeople Club Lithuania, founded in 2008 with more than 250 members, will be hosting the visitors from all corners of the European continent. The club’s organisation team had successfully bid for the 2015 IMM event in 2013 and has put a lot of dedication and creativity into preparing the event since then.

The event grounds are located on an island which can be reached by road and offers overnight accommodation on large camping sites close at hand. Live music, fun and sports competitions, an orientation rally as well as car and club presentations are the framework for this social gathering, all typical characteristics for the IMM. There will also be a parts and accessories market, slalom races and awards for the most beautiful, extraordinary and fastest versions of the classic Mini. The program also includes a classic Mini convoy on the roads surrounding the festival grounds. The guest of honour at the IMM 2015 is the Finnish “Rally Professor” Rauno Aaltonen who won the Monte Carlo Rally in a classic Mini in 1967.

The International Mini Meeting has been one of the highlights on the calender of the Mini Club scene since 1978. In the meantime the meeting has become a generation-spanning event in several respects. Many visitors see the IMM as an opportunity for going on a family outing. For this reason the Lithuanian hosts have put together a varied children’s program. What is more modern MINIs have long been accepted into the crowd of lovingly cared for classic Minis. Starting with the first MINI, which was put on the road after the relaunch of the brand to the latest model generation, it has a lot of fun and driving history to show.

(Image from IMM2014, BTW)

Kudos To Mini of Tempe

Jack Clubman got his first scheduled (now, read that word the Brit way) maintenance today at Mini of Tempe.


We want to thank Steven Pham, our Service Consultant, and all of the crew at MOT for providing us with a great experience. Everyone was very welcoming and attentive to our needs and the facility is beautiful.

Jack was serviced nicely and even got a wash and vacuuming.

If you are in the greater Phoenix area, we highly recommend Mini of Tempe.


Join Us LIVE Today, 2200 UTC


We go live today at 2200 HRS UTC for Miniology International! Tune in to the live netcast by clicking on the MINIOLOGY LIVE! link at the top of this page.

Guests from all over the world will be on deck to talk all things MINI!

Sponsored by our friends at EXPRESSION GRAPHIX!