IMSA: Konica Minolta joins Wayne Taylor Racing

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One of the sponsor tidbits from earlier Friday at the Toyota Grand Prix of Long Beach weekend occurred in the TUDOR United SportsCar Championship, as Wayne Taylor Racing announced Konica Minolta as a major sponsor.

Said the eponymous team boss in a release, “After winning the Rolex Series championship last year, and with the merger of [that series] and the American Le Mans Series this year, we knew that we would need to elevate our game in a big way if we were to continue competing for championships in the new TUDOR [Championship]. Having a business leader such as Konica Minolta come on board as the title sponsor of my organization just made sense.”

The No. 10 Corvette DP driven by Wayne’s two sons, Ricky and Jordan, sees the sponsor make its debut this weekend. The traditional black is joined by some blue, gray and white elements from Konica Minolta.

This weekend marks the first time just the brothers have shared a car since a 2009 GRAND-AM Rolex Series race at Homestead-Miami Speedway, where Ricky and Jordan were in a yellow, Brach’s sponsored Daytona Prototype for Beyer Racing. The team qualified fifth for Saturday’s 100-minute race.

Here’s who were picking to win the Indy 500 — who are YOU picking?

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Several members of the NBC Sports motorsports staff have made their predictions on who will win Sunday’s 102nd Running of the Indianapolis 500.

Of the six voters, two are going with 2017 Verizon IndyCar Series champ Josef Newgarden, while two others are going with Helio Castroneves to win a fourth 500, which would tie him with A.J. Foyt, Al Unser and Rick Mears.

Here’s our picks. Who are YOU picking?

Leigh Diffey: Helio Castroneves — He drives the place better than anyone else. For me (for what its worth) he deserves a fourth 500 ring for the frustration he went through never getting the IndyCar title!

Townsend Bell: Josef Newgarden

Nate Ryan: Simon Pagenaud — All of his 2018 misfortune on the track has disappeared in May, and it culminates in the biggest victory of his career.

Jerry Bonkowski: Helio Castroneves – There’s no pressure as he pursues his fourth Indy 500 win. All Helio has to do, as late NFL owner Al Davis would say, is “Just win, baby!” (But if Helio falls short, watch for Marco Andretti)

Kyle Lavigne: Josef Newgarden — I think he has everything he needs to get it done this year.

Dan Beaver: Robert Wickens – Has driven like anything except a rookie and his second-place finish at Phoenix proves he’s just as good on an oval as the road courses.

Follow: Jerry Bonkowski