Ricky and Jordan Taylor Give Chevrolet Corvette Daytona Prototype the Win in the Chevrolet Sports Car Challenge in Detroit
DETROIT (May 31, 2014) – Ricky Taylor held off a last-lap challenge from fellow Team Chevy driver Richard Westbrook to score the win for Chevrolet and the Corvette Daytona Prototype in the Chevrolet Sports Car Challenge on the Raceway at Belle Isle Park. It was the first win for the “Brothers Taylor” as season-long teammates in the No. 10 Konica Minolta Wayne Taylor Racing Corvette Daytona Prototype.
Jordan started the race and maintained position in the top-three during his stint. Ricky took over and got the lead due to great pit work by the team, and brought it to the checkered flag in the TUDOR United SportsCar Championship Prototype class 100-minute race in the shadows of Chevrolet’s world headquarters in Detroit. The win propelled the pair into the lead in the Series’ driver point standing.
“That was a tremendous one-two Chevrolet finish for Ricky Taylor in the No. 10 Wayne Taylor Racing Corvette Daytona Prototype and Richard Westbrook in the No. 90 Spirit of Daytona Racing Corvette Daytona Prototype,” said Mark Kent, Director of Chevrolet Racing. “This is an important weekend for Chevrolet here at Belle Isle, so a win in the shadow of our world headquarters is very special. Also, congratulations to Ricky and Jordan Taylor on their first win as teammates. Based on their outstanding performance today, it should be the first of many to come!”
This is Jordan’s third consecutive victory at Belle Isle. In 2013, teamed with Max Angelelli, Jordan also was on the top-step of the podium. In 2012, he was victorious in a Camaro GT.R in the GRAND-AM Rolex Sports Car Series.
Westbrook, the pole winner for today’s race, made a hard charge in the final laps behind the wheel of the No. 90 VisitFlorida.com Spirit of Daytona Corvette DP, but had to settle for the runner-up finishing position in round five of the 11-race season.
Michael Valiante took the green flag in the No. 90 Corvette DP, and like J. Taylor, maintained a strong presence at the front of the field, in position to make a run at the end.
After a strong run, the No. 5 Action Express Corvette DP piloted by Joao Barbosa and Christian Fittapaldi had to settle for sixth in class as a result of on-track contact causing a flat rear tire.
Mechanical woes forced an early exit for the No. 31 Marsh Racing Corvette DP driven by Eric Curran and Boris Said.
Next on the schedule for the Chevrolet Corvette Daytona Prototype teams will be the Sahlen’s Six Hour of The Glen, Watkins Glen International (New York) June 27-29, 2014,
RICKY TAYLOR, NO. 10 KONICA MINOLTA WAYNE TAYLOR RACING CORVETTE DP: YOUR THOUGHTS ON THE RACE AND VICTORY TODAY: “Great race and I have to put it up to the guys and our Corvette DP was a great car today. I just had to keep it up there and defend like mad but I couldn’t have been out there if not for the guys, Corvette and everybody that supports the team. And now we might be leading the championship and that’s what we want.”
HOW HARD WERE THOSE LAST FEW LAPS ON YOU?: “It’s used up the last bit of life I had to hold him off. He made it really hard and he was really good but putting us in the wall like that was a little uncalled for. But we were racing for the win and I will take it.”
JORDAN TAYLOR, NO. 10 KONICA MINOLTA WAYNE TAYLOR RACING CORVETTE DP: TELL US ABOUT WATCHING THOSE LAST FEW LAPS: “I was trying to not listen or watch anything because it was so stressful but we had the right guy in the car at the end. Ricky was awesome. Couple years ago we had to finish there against Garcia where Ricky held him off for an hour. So we knew we had the right guy in the car and although I don’t think we had the fastest Corvette, we had the strongest guys in the pits and the right guys in the car in traffic. So we can’t really complain and it got a little aggressive unnecessarily at some points in the race but thankfully Ricky brought it home for the win.”
DURING YOUR STINT YOU MADE SOME FORWARD PROGRESS IN A BIG WAY: “Yeah, it was obviously a great start as we went from 5th to the lead in my stint, so I couldn’t have asked for much more. Then the guys in the pits and then Ricky obviously doing a great job in the end. So it’s still a team effort.”
WAYNE TAYLOR, TEAM OWNER NO. 10 KONICA MINOLTA WAYNE TAYLOR RACING CORVETTE DP: DID YOUR HEART JUST SINK WHEN YOU SAW HIM GET IN THE WALL THERE? “You know, my initial thought was, ‘that was a disgraceful move’. You know, it’s fine to challenge and put yourself inside but to push somebody into the wall…..they got what they deserved. It was incredibly disappointing to have competitors that operate like that. They are certainly a team that should be better than that, it’s a disgrace. Anyway, we beat them and we beat everybody. Of course for Ricky, Jordon and me as a family – I cannot put into words what this means.”
YOU NOW HAVE TWO STRAIGHT HERE: “Yeah, I mean think about it. Jordon won in a Camaro here, and now he has won in this Corvette here, and now he and Ricky have won. The great thing was that Ricky finished the race. Confidence-wise for them it was really, really good but they are totally interchangeable. I keep thinking and hoping everyone is watching these two and recognizing what they can do. I can’t be doing this the rest of my career and they should be in big places. We have Konica Minolta here and I can’t thank them enough for what they have done for me. We got them a win and I think we are leading the championship.”
RICHARD WESTBROOK, NO. 90 VISIT FLORIDA SPIRIT OF DAYTONA RACING CORVETTE DP: WAS THAT EXCITING FOR YOU? “No. I mean it’s great to be back on the podium and I think we deserve it, but it’s just frustrating to have such a fast car and just can’t get any temperature in the tires after the restart. It took several laps to come in and when it did it was spot on like in qualifying. Unfortunately when you have a half-an-hour sprint at the end you need more weaponry than that. So it’s something to work on and Rome wasn’t built in a day and we have come from a long way down. To get second is a good result. Especially in Detroit.”
DO YOU FEEL LIKE THIS COULD BE A TURNING POINT? “Yes, definitely. We have a pacey car and we just have to fine tune now. Had there not been another yellow, I think it could have been our day. We just have to work on that tire issue, but we will get there.”
MICHAEL VALIANTE, NO. 90 VISIT FLORIDA SPIRIT OF DAYTONA RACING CORVETTE DP: THAT WAS AN EXCITING FINISH THERE AT THE END? “These races are so close and you never know what is going to happen. Unfortunately I got caught up in traffic, lost a couple of positions, and that is pretty much what determined the outcome of the race here. So it’s great that the car has the pace, Richard is doing a great job, and we just want to keep the momentum going. We have had some bad luck the last couple of rounds when we should have been on the podium if not won.”