TUSC: Taylor brothers team up with dad Wayne

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We’re a bit late on posting this news, but then the Taylor brothers might argue it’s never too late to race together as “Bro-drivers.”

Indeed Jordan Taylor – 2013 GRAND-AM Rolex Series Daytona Prototype co-champion and an emerging Internet legend – and older brother Ricky Taylor will co-drive their father Wayne’s No. 10 Corvette Dallara DP in the 2014 TUDOR United SportsCar Championship.

“This has obviously been a longtime dream of mine and, quite honestly, I thought it could never happen,” Wayne Taylor said in the team’s release. “Thanks to the tremendous support of Team Chevy, Velocity Worldwide and Toshiba for making this happen. I am incredibly excited to move forward with both my sons driving for our racing team full-time.

Jordan Taylor replaced Ricky alongside Max Angelelli this season; the JT and “Max the Axe” pairing won five races, including the last three in a row. At another Corvette DP team, Ricky bore the brunt of bad luck with co-driver Richard Westbrook and went winless.

Angelelli will race on with the team as third driver for endurance races. Jordan Taylor, however, will not be able to carry on his duties as third driver for Corvette Racing’s GT program at least in the TUDOR Championship.

The Taylor brothers did race as co-drivers in 2009 with Beyer Racing for three races, but this marks their first full season racing as co-drivers.

“I think we’ve both had the chance to prove ourselves out there on our own the last several years,” Jordan Taylor said. “With Ricky having earned all those poles and winning all those races with Max, and then our championship this year with Max, the timing seems to be ideal for maximizing our recent success with Ricky and myself as full-time co-drivers. Max has been a like a brother to both of us and it will be great to keep that continuity going, as well, with him as our mentor and co-driver at the longer races.”

“First off, my dad and I would like to thank the Spirit of Daytona team for the opportunity to drive for their organization this past season,” Ricky Taylor added. “Prior to that, it was a tremendous experience to spend three years driving my dad’s car with Max, and it was an absolute thrill to see Jordan and Max enjoy such a solid season in winning the championship the way they did. Now, the three of us will all be working together with the goal of winning the first United SportsCar Championship. This is truly incredible for our family, for our great sponsors and partners, and our fans.”

Ricky Taylor has also, for the move, changed his Twitter handle from @ricky_taylor90 to @rickytaylor_10, so make a note of that.

Fernando Alonso completes first test with United Autosports

Photo: United Autosports
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Two-time Formula 1 World Champion Fernando Alonso enjoyed his first outing with United Autosports, with whom he will contest the 2018 Rolex 24 at Daytona, in their Ligier JS P217 LMP2 chassis.

The McLaren Formula 1 driver completed the test at Motorland Aragon in Spain alongside co-driver Phil Hanson, who will be a teammate with Alonso at next year’s 24-hour Daytona enduro. Filipe Albuquerque, a former GT class winner at the Rolex 24, was also on hand to help Alonso and the team ahead of Alonso’s first run in an LMP2 car, which comes only a couple days after he made his LMP1 testing debut with Toyota. Albuquerque races with Mustang Sampling Racing in IMSA, but will return to United’s European Le Mans Series program for all but one race in 2018.

“I had a great first test with United Autosports. Obviously, we are on a really tight schedule between now and Daytona, but it was nice to jump in the car for the first time,” said Alonso, who will rejoin the team at the official Roar Before the 24 test on January 5-7.

Alonso added, “There’s quite a few switches and things to study so it was important to do this initial shakedown before Daytona, so I could fully learn about the car. I’m happy with everything – the car felt great and the team were fantastic. The atmosphere here is wonderful, like a big family, so today has been amazing. I cannot wait for Daytona.”

Team owner Zak Brown, who also serves as executive director of McLaren Technology Group and helps lead the McLaren Formula 1 effort, shared Alonso’s enthusiasm and was not surprised he was able to acclimate himself relatively quickly.

“Fernando’s first test with United Autosports went awesome as expected. He is a world champion and it is a pleasure to have him in our car,” he said of Alonso’s debut with the team.

Alonso is currently schedule to contest the Rolex 24 with the aforementioned Hanson and McLaren test driver Lando Norris.