Although many dismissed the "openometer" on the second-generation Mini Cooper Convertible as a gimmick, David Loveall put his to good use. The Kansas City, Missouri, resident logged nearly 555.55 hours of open-air driving between August and December of 2009, making him the official winner of Mini's Open One Challenge.
Already frequently on the road for business, Loveall used the contest as an opportunity to see the entire continental U.S. in his Mini. Loveall packed his tent and sleeping bag, allowing him to camp over the five-month tour, which took him over Route 66 and the lonely U.S. 50.
"I took on the challenge for the story I'd get to tell," said Loveall. "My Mini Cooper Convertible is the first car I have ever bought, and the experiences I have had within the first year of owning it have been amazing."
More than 400 Mini Convertible owners submitted their monthly "openometer" readings -- an indication of how much time they drove with the top down -- in hopes of winning the contest. Loveall held the top spot in four of the five months, falling to third place only once.
As his prize, Loveall receives a trip for two to visit the Mini factory in Oxford, England, in addition to the $1000 in gift cards he won over the course of the event.