Wayne Taylor Racing Looks To Remain Unbeaten This Week At COTA

Image result for Konica Minolta Cadillac DPi-V.R

There’s a first time for everything, even the first time when brothers Ricky and Jordan Taylor and their No. 10 Konica Minolta Cadillac DPi-V.R will take the green flag to start a race and not finish with a victory.

But the winners of this season’s opening three events – the Rolex 24 At Daytona, the Mobil 1 Twelve Hours of Sebring, and the Bubba Burger Sports Car Grand Prix on the streets of Long Beach, California – hope to delay that inevitable first non-win as long as possible. They’ll look instead to add to their three-race winning streak in Saturday’s IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship Advance Auto Parts Sports Car Showcase at the Circuit of the Americas in Austin, Texas.

For the second of three races in a row, the Taylors arrive in town as the defending event winners. When the series last visited Austin in October, Ricky Taylor earned the pole position, his brother was unfazed by a midrace spin while leading, and together they led 70 of 75 race laps en route to their series-high third win of the season.

Last month, they arrived at Long Beach as two-time-defending event winners and completed the trifecta with a thrilling victory from the pole position with a late-race pass for the lead. They’re also defending event winners on the Streets of Belle Isle circuit they’ll visit the first weekend of June in downtown Detroit, where the team has won three of the last four races overall.

The victories that started the season at the iconic Daytona and Sebring endurance events were both career firsts for both Taylor brothers. And with their most recent Long Beach victory, they became major North American sportscar racing’s first duo to go unbeaten through three season-opening events since Chip Ganassi Racing with Felix Sabates drivers Scott Pruett and Memo Rojas won Daytona, Sebring and at Barber Motorsports Park in Birmingham, Alabama to start their 2011 championship campaign.

Saturday’s two-hour, 40-minute race on the beautiful 3.4-mile, 20-turn home of the Formula One United States Grand Prix will be the first for the Konica Minolta Cadillac DPi-V.R on a true road course. Despite the performance unknowns that situation presents, the Taylor brothers and the rest of the team remain confident after their sleek, new racecar enjoyed trouble-free runs in its maiden voyages on Daytona’s hybrid superspeedway road circuit, Sebring’s World War II-era airport runway circuit, and the Long Beach street course.

If the team’s history is any indication, the Konica Minolta Cadillac DPi-V.R should be one of the cars to beat once again this weekend, as its predecessor was during the team’s first four visits to Austin. A late-race penalty while fighting for the lead and an opening-lap bump from behind while leading that resulted in a spin both ruined potential race-winning efforts in 2013 and 2014. Misfortune was finally averted in 2015 when the Taylor brothers brought home a solid runner-up finish at Austin before their breakthrough win there last year.

Practice for Saturday’s Advance Auto Parts Sports Car Showcase begins Thursday morning with Prototype-class qualifying set for 2:20 p.m. EDT Friday with live video provided by IMSA.tv beginning at 1:05 p.m. The green flag flies at 2:35 p.m. Saturday with same-day-delayed TV coverage set for FS1 at 7 p.m. Select in-car camera video and live audio from IMSA Radio will be available beginning at 2:25 p.m. at IMSA.com and the IMSA smartphone app. Live timing and scoring during all on-track sessions is available at IMSA.com and the IMSA smartphone app.

RICKY TAYLOR, driver, No. 10 Konica Minolta Cadillac DPi-V.R:
 

After winning three races in a row to start the season, you’re headed to another track where you won last year. Does it feel somewhat surreal, yet? How do you stay hungry after all the success you’ve had, and the fact you’re going back to two more tracks in a row where you won last year?

“It has been an amazing start to the year and we are so lucky to be surrounded by such good people and equipment to make these results possible. It has been even more motivating and, interestingly, with each win we seem to feel more motivated to get another one. The team has not taken the pressure off since last October when all of this started, and I feel like the intensity has even gone up since Daytona. Everybody just seems to be very highly motivated to put it together again.”

Talk about your experience switching gears and running the SprintX races at VIR this past weekend, and how you fit that in with your pursuit of a higher goal, which is to win the IMSA WeatherTech Championship.

“Racing in the Cadillac ATS-V.R was definitely a change of pace and scenery, but I thoroughly enjoyed racing there with a different team and a different group of competitors. It was a lot of pressure going and being a part of that Cadillac Racing effort because we were just there to support their season’s goal, which is winning their championship. So I was just doing my best to support their team and gave them my full effort at VIR. But, coming back after that, we have to reset and focus back on our championship.”

Another new track for the new Konica Minolta Cadillac DPi-V.R this weekend. What are your thought about how COTA will suit this new racecar?

“We have a very good history at COTA and the team has done a lot of work to prepare for us going there for the first time with the Cadillac DPi-V.R to ensure we can translate what worked in past years and apply it to the new car. I think the fast-flowing corners at COTA will be fitting for our car. We may not have the top speed, anymore, with the current BoP (Balance of Performance), but our car is very strong when it comes to fast-flowing corners, which COTA has plenty of.”

JORDAN TAYLOR, driver, No. 10 Konica Minolta Cadillac DPi-V.R:
 

After winning three races in a row to start the season, you’re headed to a track where you won last year. Does it feel somewhat surreal, yet? How do you stay hungry after all the success you’ve had, and the fact you’re going back to two more tracks in a row where you won last year?

“Yeah it’s been an incredible start to the year. I don’t think we’ll realize how incredible it is until sometime down the road. Right now, we just feel like we’re doing our jobs. As drivers, mechanics, engineers – the whole team – everyone is doing what they’re supposed to and it’s just clicking for us. It’s easy to stay hungry for race wins when you go race by race. Each weekend is its own event, so you don’t think too much about what we’ve already done this year. We approach it the same every time. COTA had been good to us, historically, so hopefully we can keep that trend going.”

Talk about your experience switching gears and running the SprintX races at VIR this past weekend, and how you fit that in with your pursuit of a higher goal, which is to win the IMSA WeatherTech Championship.

“The SprintX event was a whole different animal. It was our first time racing a GT3 car and probably our first sprint race in about four or five years. It was a good experience, though. Michael (Cooper) and I finished the weekend with two podiums, so we were happy with that, considering how our weekend started. Anytime you can get some more racing under your belt, and more experience, it’s a good thing. You can always learn something new, so we can take some of those lessons into the rest of our IMSA season, as well.”

Another new track for the new Konica Minolta Cadillac DPi-V.R this weekend. What are your thought about how COTA will suit this new racecar?

“When we changed cars to our new Cadillac DPi-V.R, I think COTA was one of the tracks on the calendar that I was most excited about. With the added downforce and athleticism of the car, I think it’s going to be an awesome track for it, especially the high-speed esses at the beginning of the lap. It’s always a great track for racing, so I’m looking forward to seeing how the weekend shakes out.”

 

WAYNE TAYLOR, owner, No. 10 Konica Minolta Cadillac DPi-V.R:
 

Your overall thoughts as the series heads to Austin this weekend?

“Winning three in a row has been absolutely great, so now we want to make it four in a row. We did win there last year, and we’ve had very good racecars each time we’ve been there the last four years even though we did start off with some bad luck the first two times. But with our new car and the current situation, we’re not going to know how fast we are there until we get there and hit the track. The power disadvantage certainly didn’t show much at Long Beach, but now we’re going to a circuit with long, long straights. It just depends on what happens when we get there. In the meantime, we’ll just keep doing what we normally do, which is focusing on strategy, focusing on the drivers, focusing on the setup for the race, and hopefully it will all add up to another win. It’s definitely one of our best tracks, historically. We really like it. And, like I keep saying, we’re going there with the best car, the best drivers and the best team, so hopefully that will bring success one more time this weekend.”

 

Konica Minolta Cadillac DPi-V.R Team Report

Round 4 of 10 – Advance Auto Parts Sports Car Showcase – Austin

 

At-Track PR Contact: Laz Denes with True Speed Communication (256-717-8014 or Laz.Denes@TrueSpeedCommunication.com).

 

Event: 2-hour, 40-minute IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship race at Circuit of the Americas in Austin, Texas (3.4-mile, 20-turn road course).

 

Broadcast (race time 2:35 p.m. EDT Saturday): FS1 same-day delay – 7 p.m. EDT. Fridayqualifying – 1:05 to 2:35 p.m. via IMSA TV at IMSA.com, IMSA mobile app (Prototype class at 2:20 p.m.).

 

Click here for Wayne Taylor Racing’s Track Performance History.

 

Click here for Wayne Taylor Racing’s 2017 results.

 

Driver Lineup:

 

Driver: Ricky Taylor

Birthdate: Aug. 3, 1989

Birthplace: Surrey, England

Residence: Orlando, Florida

Personal: Single

 

Driver: Jordan Taylor

Birthdate: May 10, 1991

Birthplace: Orlando, Florida

Residence: Apopka, Florida

Personal: Single

Primary Crew Members:

Owner: Wayne Taylor (Port Elizabeth, South Africa)

Team Manager: Travis Houge (Dolliver, Iowa)

Car Chief: Chris Bennett (Indianapolis)

Lead Mechanic: Bill Mullen (Hamilton, Ohio)

Race Engineer: Brian Pillar (Alliston, Ontario, Canada)

Support Engineers: Adam Banet (Floyd Knobs, Ind.),Shishir Vyas (Sydney)

Mechanics/Crew: Doug Bradley (Estherville, Iowa), David Nisbett (East Grand Forks, Minn.), Chris Seaman (Hamburg, Pa.) Nicholas Voils (Indianapolis)​

Truck Driver: Paul Sheehan (Olivia, Minn.)

 

Over-the-Wall Crew Members:

 

Front Tire Changer: Doug Bradley

Rear Tire Changer: Chris Bennett

Airjack: Dave Nisbett

Fuel Man: Chris Seaman

Fire Bottle: Paul Sheehan

Driver Change Assist: Bill Mullen

Pit Board: Nick Voils

Tire Assist: Nick Voils, Paul Sheehan

Deadman: Shishir Vyas

Car Specifications
 

No. 10 Konica Minolta Cadillac DPi-V.R

Chassis: The monocoque is made by Dallara of carbon fiber with aluminum honeycomb and Zylon side panels. The bodywork is carbon fiber with Kevlar panel inserts.

Engine: Cadillac 6.2 liter V-8 engine, the same engine that powers the Cadillac CTS-V supersedan. Finer points include: Cadillac Gen V LT based 6.2-liter, naturally aspirated V-8 with production-based aluminum block and heads. Earnhardt Childress Racing (ECR)-designed semi-stressed engine mounting system with integral oil lubrication system.

 

Exhaust: Rear-facing, top exit, dual outlet multi-branch exhaust header system.

 

Power: 600 horsepower at approximately 7,900 rpm.

 

Fuel Capacity: 19.8 gallons.

 

Engine Management: Bosch MS5.0 ECU, C60 DATA Logger, traction control.

 

Electronics:

Power: Cosworth IPS48, SSR300A, RLU, RSP20.

Data: Cosworth CLU Plus Pro.

Rear-View Camera: Gentex Corporation, GNTX-R, Rear Camera Mirror.

 

Steering Wheel: Cosworth CCW Mk2, paddle shift, 4.5-inch TFT LCD.

 

Clutch: Tilton 5.5 Carbon Disc.

 

Gearbox: Xtrac P1159F, transverse sequential six-speed.

Steering: KYB electrically assisted rack and pinion.

 

Suspension: Front/rear double wishbone independent pushrod.

Brakes: Brembo Monobloc six-piston light aluminum calipers, carbon fiber discs and pads.

 

Weight/Length/Width/Height: 2,050 pounds / 15.58 feet (187 inches) / 6.23 feet (74.8 inches) / 3.78 feet (45.3 inches).

Wheels: American Racing forged AL6061-T6 rims (front 18.0 inches x 12.5 inches; rear 18.0 inches x 13.0 inches).

Tires: Continental Tire (front 320/680-R18; rear 325/710-R18).

 

Notes of Interest
 

  • Round four of the 2017 IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship takes the No. 10 Konica Minolta Cadillac DPi-V.R driving duo of Ricky and Jordan Taylor to theCircuit of the Americas in Austin, Texas for Saturday’s Advance Auto Parts Sports Car Showcase.
  • The Taylor brothers are off to the best start in major North American sportscar racing since 2011 after winning the opening three events of the season – the Rolex 24 At Daytona, the Mobil 1 Twelve Hours of Sebring and the Bubba Burger Sports Car Grand Prix in Long Beach, California.
  • In 2011, the Chip Ganassi Racing with Felix Sabates duo of Scott Pruett and Memo Rojas co-drove to consecutive victories at Daytona, Sebring and Barber Motorsports Park in Birmingham, Alabama to open the season. The streak ended when they finished second in the next race at Virginia International Raceway in Alton.
  • Four weeks ago, on the streets of Long Beach, Ricky Taylor qualified on the pole for the first time this season and the 14th time in his career in track-record time. He led the opening 33 laps of the one-hour, 40-minute race before handing things over to his brother. Jordan Taylor then pulled off some late-race magic for the win, passing Ryan Dalziel of the No. 2 Extreme Speed Motorsports entry for the lead with five laps to go. It was the third Long Beach win in a row for the Taylors, the 17th for each in their respective careers, and the 27th win in the history of the team.
  • The Daytona victory Jan. 28-29, alongside now-retired veteran Italian Max “The Ax” Angelelli and four-time NASCAR Cup Series champion Jeff Gordon, was during themaiden voyage of the all-new Konica Minolta Cadillac DPi-V.R, and it represented manufacturer Cadillac’s return to Prototype-class racing for the first time since their father and team owner, three-time sportscar-racing champion Wayne Taylor, campaigned theCadillac Northstar LMP entry from 2000 to 2002.
  • The Sebring victory March 18, when they were joined for the first time by British open-wheel specialist Alex Lynn, came 21 years to the day since their father scored back-to-back victories at Daytona and Sebring en route to the 1996 championship.
  • In winning the two iconic endurance marathons to open this season, the Konica Minolta Cadillac led a combined 386 of 1,007 laps (38.3 percent).
  • The Long Beach win occurred without the on-site services of technical director Brian Pillar, who was on travel restriction while placed on a liquid diet due to a stomach ailment. Support engineer Adam Banet assumed Pillar’s at-track duties and called the race from the pitbox. Earlier this season, it was Banet who had to travel home from Daytona to be with his wife Andrea for the birth of their first child. Pillar has since received a clean bill of health and will be back with the team in Austin this weekend.
  • Last October, the Taylor brothers broke through for the team’s first win at Circuit of the Americas after finishing second in 2015. Ricky Taylor qualified on the pole and his brother overcame a late-race spin while leading as they went on to score their series-high third win of last season. They combined to lead 70 of the 75 race laps.
  • The runner-up finish in 2016 came after back-to-back outings at the track that were plagued with bad luck during the team’s first two visits in 2013 and 2014. In the 2016 race, after a flawless opening stint by Jordan Taylor, Ricky Taylor finished 16.91 seconds behind the race-winning Ganassi duo of Pruett and Joey Hand. In 2014, Ricky Taylor was taken out from behind after taking the lead on the opening lap of the race and the team could salvage only a seventh-place finish. In 2013, a late-race penalty while fighting for the lead relegated the team to a 10th-place finish.
  • In addition to their 17th career win, each, at Long Beach this season, the 27-year-old Ricky Taylor also has 41 podium finishes and 14 poles in 102 career major North American sportscar races, the 25-year-old Jordan Taylor 34 podium finishes and 10 poles in 92 career races.
  • Angelelli closed his career as the third-winningest driver in North American sportscar racing history, his 28 wins surpassed only by Pruett’s 43 and Rojas’ 29. The veteran Italian stepped out of the cockpit in favor of his new role as program manager for the Cadillac DPi-V.R program after playing a major behind-the-scenes role in developing the all-new racecar the past two years.
  • Gordon returned to the team for his second career Rolex 24 and second career sportscar race, the first coming with this same team in 2007, when he co-drove with Wayne Taylor, Angelelli and Jan Magnussen to a podium finish.
  • Cadillac V-Performance Racing announced Feb. 13 that Ricky and Jordan Taylor would drive Cadillac ATS-V.R Coupe racecars in the five SprintX rounds of the 2017 Pirelli World Challenge – the first appearance for both Taylor brothers in the series. At the first of five events last weekend at Virginia International Raceway in Alton, Jordan Taylor netted a pair of podium finishes alongside Michael Cooper. The other events areMay 19-21 at Canadian Tire Motorsport Park in Bowmanville, Ontario, May 26-27 at Lime Rock Park in Lakeville, Connecticut, Aug. 11-13 at Utah Motorsports Complex in Tooele, and Sept. 1-3 at Circuit of the Americas in Austin, Texas.
  • Between this year’s Daytona and Sebring stops on the tour, Ricky Taylor received a rare treat at Homestead-Miami Speedway, where he tested the Team Penske IndyCar of defending series champion Simon Pagenaud on the Homestead road circuit. Sources said Taylor laid down laps comparable to Pagenaud’s baseline laps earlier that day, but the ever-so-humble Taylor attributed his success to better track conditions during his time in the car.

TIL NEXT TIME, I AM STILL WORKING ON MY REDNECK!

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