PEOPLE.

Image with a colour gradient and the following lettering: MINI 2022, European Championships and BIG LOVE UNITED.

WE CELEBRATE DIVERSITY.

Attention all sport lovers and diversity allies: The European Championships 2022 are just round the corner! From 11 – 21 August 2022, Bavaria’s state capital Munich will transform into an enormous arena of sport – and MINI will be in the thick of it.

 

Skip straight to the topic that piques your interest most:

 

After the Summer Olympics in 1972 and the coronavirus pandemic that has taken a lot out of us these past two years, one of the biggest sports events is now due to take place in Germany after 50 years. 

Those familiar with MINI know that we wouldn’t miss out on getting involved in this spectacular sporting event. Besides sponsoring the bouldering and beach volleyball events, we have come up with plenty of other creative events that will take place in and around the European Championships 2022. We want to unite, honour and celebrate both the diversity of sport with its wonderful and unifying strength, and the people with a wide range of passions and skills from all over the continent!

So let’s come together to cheer on all the fantastic athletes, the idols of our time – there’s more than 4,700 of them in total, by the way. They are arriving from all over Europe to compete in nine different sports.

Has that got you interested? Are you keen to know more about the European Championships 2022 in Munich? 

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A collage of seven small images showing different people. All of them having fun, presenting MINI’s motto BIG LOVE UNITED.

We don’t just want to clap our hands until they’re sore and notice our throats getting sorer with each passing day from cheering in the stands during the events – we also want to have a good time together with you! 

How, exactly? By putting on fantastic events surrounding diversity during the European Championships 2022 at Königsplatz and the MINI Pavilion, of course! Make way for inspiration as you discover our BIG LOVE COLLECTION at Königsplatz – it features 11 different and special MINIs that we briefly introduce you to further down the page if you just scroll. Be sure to note down the dates so you know when your favourite is on show!

For MINI, there’s no better time to celebrate individuality and community in all its facets than during such a meaningful sport and cultural event like the European Championships 2022. That’s why, staying true to the MINI motto BIG LOVE UNITED, we want to make a difference together with you. It doesn’t matter where we all come from, how old we are, which gender we identify as, who we love, what skin colour we have, whether we live with a disability, which religion we believe in – the list goes on...

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All about diversity.

We simply accept and appreciate each other as we are. “We’re all different but we’re pretty good together” is one of MINI’s guiding principles. Bring it to life and spread it across the world, just like we do! Because as special as our employees who develop our custom cars are, equally as different are the people who end up driving them: character types who question structures to make room for creativity and innovations, so that as many people as possible benefit from them in the end.

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Four small images showing happy people. They present MINI’s claim “We’re all different but we’re pretty good together”.
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Image of race driver Nicolas Hamilton. He is a role model and the MINI host at the European Championships 2022 in Munich.
Our Host Nicolas Hamilton.

Nicolas Hamilton is one of them. The racing driver has been living with cerebral palsy since childhood, which hasn’t hindered him one bit in successfully mastering races in the British Touring Car Championship. The 30-year-old pursues his goals with passion, sporting spirit and determination, which makes him a very special person in our eyes. That’s why MINI counts itself very lucky that Nicolas Hamilton will be joining us as MINI’s host of the European Championships 2022 from 17–20 August 2022. Follow Nicolas as he enjoys the go-kart feeling of a converted MINI Electric on his road trip to the idyllic Schliersee, in the Bavarian Alps. Because for MINI, unlimited mobility as well as freedom and driving pleasure belong together! That's why, in case you don´t know yet, MINI offers drivers with mild to moderate disabilities the chance to individually convert their MINI into a car more suitable for them. So look forward, like us, to the post-joyride verdict of racing driver Nicolas Hamilton in his MINI! 

If you want to find out more about Nicolas Hamilton, this impressive young person, just click here: MINI.com. We met with him in London, be sure to have a read of the interview! And if you don’t want to miss any of Nicolas Hamilton’s appearances at MINI events during the European Championships, you’re best off subscribing to MINI on Instagram, TikTok, YouTube, Twitter, Pinterest and LinkedIn.

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Mini diversity ambassadors.

Alongside Nicolas Hamilton, other inspiring personalities will be living out diversity in various and meaningful ways at several different MINI events. These include athletes, dancers, musicians, artists, creatives – all of them sharing motivating stories and showing their version of the MINI motto BIG LOVE UNITED. You can also see it for yourself on TikTok! Because there are also great TikTokers like Jannik Diefenbach and his Grandpa, Jun KimClemens Blanz and Elena Bulkowski who will join the celebrations. Exciting, isn’t it?  

Don’t miss out on what these creative minds get started on together with MINI, and how they interpret and bring the topic of diversity to life. 

Do you want to know who we’re talking about? No problem! Some of the impressive and lovely MINI ambassadors have already had a chat with us and answered some of our questions. Enjoy reading the interviews! 

Image of MINI diversity ambassador Salif Lasource. He is a dancer and artist.

Salif Lasource

25, DANCER & ARTIST, BASED IN PARIS/FRANCE 

Salif, what was the nicest compliment you have heard about your moves?

In 2018 I met a girl called Sonja in Paris. When she saw me, she came up to me and she just said “Thank you for everything you do”. She has had a tough time and a personal struggle and was just sad and told me that seeing me dance has brought her positive thinking and energy back. That really moved me and made me emotional.

How can dancing and moving encourage people to contribute to diversity?

Dancing is sharing energy and positive vibes. People who are sensitive to my dance can feel my dance, and this counts for anyone, no matter where they are from or how old they are.

MINI celebrates diversity in all its facets at several inspiring events during the European Championships 2022 in Munich. What does diversity mean for you personally?               

Diversity means bringing people together. Including everyone who is different but shares the same goals, directions and mindsets.

And what do you think about the uniting MINI motto of BIG LOVE?

Without love there is no hope.

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Lotfi Lamaali

38, LONGBOARDER & FILMMAKER, BASED IN PARIS/FRANCE

Lotfi, what is so fascinating about longboarding for you?                           

Longboarding and especially longboard dancing is and has always been a way to express myself, whatever mood I’m in. It’s also a kind of a therapy for me, it’s liberating and stress-killing!

“We’re all different but we’re pretty good together” is a MINI claim. How do you connect with it? 

We all learn from each other, and having people from different backgrounds and cultures can only push things forward.

And the uniting MINI motto BIG LOVE means for you…                                   

After all we’ve been through these past couple of years, I think a lot of people realised that the only way we human beings can survive anything is by supporting and loving each other.

A tip from a pro like you: How can beginners best start to learn longboarding?                                                                                                      

Get yourself some protective gear, a decent longboard and just GO out there and do things. Don’t be afraid of falls, because it’s a part of the process.

Image of MINI diversity ambassador Lotfi Lamaali. He is a longboarder and filmmaker.
Photo: Christian Rosillo.
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Image of Bellatrix, a multi-disciplinary musician and MINI diversity ambassador.
Photo: Raphael Neal.

Bellatrix

30, MULTI-DISCIPLINARY MUSICIAN, BASED BETWEEN LONDON AND BRISTOL/UK

Bellatrix, how did you come to beatboxing?              

I was introduced to beatboxing at the age of 14 by a family friend. By the age of 17 I was the first professional female beatboxer in the UK – I now identify as non-binary – and by the age of 19 I was the world champion!

Why it is important to spread MINI’s claim “We’re all different but we’re pretty good together”?                                       

I have always been committed to showing up and being visible as an underrepresented identity in my industry. At the same time I want to create more space than I take up. I think we can all have a more holistic world view when there are more voices at the table, like the array of incredible humans that MINI have brought together here.

Do you have a special connection with the brand MINI?

The first girl I ever fell in love with used to drive a yellow MINI. She was friends with my neighbour, and I always knew when she was around because of her car. One day she had a burst tyre, and I fixed it for her. To say thank you, she took me for dinner. The next time the yellow MINI was on our road, it wasn’t to visit the neighbour!

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Kira Walkenhorst

31, OLYMPIC CHAMPION, WORLD CHAMPION AND EUROPEAN CHAMPION IN BEACH VOLLEYBALL, BASED IN BORKEN/GERMANY

Kira, what role does the positive power of sport play when it comes to diversity?

As far as my experience goes, things like sexual orientation, religion, education, skin colour, disability etc. don’t play any kind of role. I have never experienced discrimination personally. The sport serves as a good example from which our society could learn a thing or two. And beyond the sport there is certainly plenty of room for improvement.

You have triplets with your partner Maria Kleefisch. Together, you campaign for child protection and fight for gay rights and for equal marriage. Where do you find the strength?

It’s an inner drive that we both have and that is really important in a modern society. It doesn’t actually require that much strength because we put our blood, sweat and tears into it.

MINI is celebrating diversity in all its facets at several inspiring events during the European Championships 2022 in Munich. What does diversity mean for you personally?

For me, diversity means that every person can live out their own self-truth however they want without facing discrimination or weird looks.

Image of MINI diversity ambassador Kira Walkenhorst – the Olympic champion, World champion and European champion in beach volleyball.
Photo: Mirja Geh.
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Image of MINI diversity ambassador Charlotte de Carle. She is a party starter and DJ.

Charlotte de Carle

35, PARTY STARTER/DJ, BASED IN LONDON/UK

Charlotte, do you have a special connection with the brand MINI?

MINI has always been my favourite car, from my dad owning a classic Cooper and taking me out on the open road with it to taking my first road trip in the Countryman. The driving always feels fun. My go-to adventure car.

MINI celebrates diversity in all its facets at several inspiring events during the European Championships 2022 in Munich. In your opinion, what role does the power of music play in the context of diversity?

Music is a form of expression; you can tell a lot about a person by what they like to listen to. It can change a mood, express when you can’t find the words, and music brings people together from all walks of life. It’s a powerful tool.

Which role do you as a DJane and woman want to take in that?

DJing is a very male-driven industry, so for me to be at this point, I am very proud. It’s all about breaking down barriers and stereotypes; gender shouldn’t define job opportunities. It means a lot to me as I have always loved music, so to be able to do this and now be taken seriously is a blessing. And believe me, I’ve been mansplained many a time. It’s another pat on the back to prove people you are worth it.

And which songs can you recommend us to empower body and mind?

“Everybody’s free: To wear Sunscreen” from Baz Luhrmann. If I’m ever having a wobbly day, the lyrics in this track are stunning. Oh, and also the song “Run the world (Girls)” from Beyonce. Because that’s a quality female empowering one.

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Molly Thompson-Smith

24, PROFESSIONAL CLIMBER AND FIVE-TIME CHAMPION IN LEAD CLIMBING, BASED IN SHEFFIELD/UNITED KINGDOM

Molly, when did you start climbing?

I came across climbing shortly before my 7th birthday, deciding that it was a good sport to try! I joined the local kids’ club a year later and haven’t stopped climbing since.

Why not? What does climbing means for you?

It means anything I want it to mean in that moment – it can be an excuse to catch up with friends and drink coffee, or it can be the way in which I push myself to my absolute limit.

Which skills, maybe also in the context of diversity, would you say you have learned through climbing?

It can be such a collaborative sport and our uniqueness is what helps us all find different solutions to the same problem. I’ve taken this approach to problems in life, knowing when to seek out advice and appreciate the input of others alike.

How do climbing and MINI come together in the claim "We're all different but we're pretty good together”?

It’s such a fantastic sport, but it definitely lacks a variety of members in its community. I want to change that, and make it a comfortable and inviting space for anyone who may be interested in joining our community. With the support and efforts of companies like MINI, climbing will be able to reach a new audience and may attract people who never thought they’d be into climbing!

Image of MINI diversity ambassador Molly Thompson Smith. She is a professional climber and five-time champion in lead climbing.
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Image of MINI diversity ambassador and yoga teacher Caroline Perrineau.

Caroline Perrineau

35, YOGA TEACHER, BASED IN PARIS/FRANCE

Caroline, what role does mindfulness play in the context of diversity, in your opinion?                

Mindfulness teaches us a lot about what triggers certain emotions in us, and hence actions. Taking a step back allows us to give ourselves space to reflect and a better appreciation of diversity, whether it be within ourselves or towards others.

What does the uniting MINI motto BIG LOVE mean for you?

It means to me that we get to create an even bigger source of love and energy as we gather and combine our differences, and that we can share that with others so we can grow an even bigger love.

What are you most looking forward to in terms of the event?

I am very curious and love trying new things. I look forward to connecting with other talents, to learn from them and also to follow the European Championships so closely.

Which yoga pose would you say is the best to reload your energy after a stressful day? 

Downward facing dog” is for me a great pose to both release stress and regain a bit of energy while stretching. It does a lot to the body and the mind by stretching legs, back, and also gaining strength in arms and turning our head upside down.

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As inspiring as our MINI ambassadors are, equally as diverse and special is our BIG LOVE COLLECTION. We have been developing and designing MINIs that commemorate special occasions, are born out of special design collaborations or are auctioned off for a good cause since day dot. Come along and make a note of the dates if you want to experience these unique models in real life. 

You can look forward to a visit to Königsplatz to see these extraordinary MINI models in the course of the European Championships 2022 in central Munich.

Have we overpromised? We don’t think so! Bring yourselves, your friends and good vibes along to celebrate the colourful diversity of life with all its inspiring, unique and creative facets together with MINI – and very much in the spirit of BIG LOVE. Have a great time at the European Championships 2022 and remember: “We’re all different but we’re pretty good together!”

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Image of a person at sunset. The person holds up her hands and makes a heart shape in the spirit if BIG LOVE UNITED.