After almost 1800 miles in our long-term Mini Coupé JCW over the weekend, I’ve got a much deeper understanding of our car.

Autocar snapper Stuart Price and I drove down to the Mini United festival at a blazing hot Paul Ricard circuit in the south of France. The journey from grey, cloudy Middlesex to the azure skies of Le Castellet and back (via a couple of detours) is one of the longest trips our Coupé JCW has undertaken.

After our visit to the remnants of the historic Reims circuit on the way down on Friday and our immersion in all things Mini on Saturday, the next morning we drove along the south coast to visit the breathtaking Viaduc de Millau.