Wayne Taylor Wins Big IMSA Race, Splurges By Flying Home on Southwest, Seat 28B

Victory puts team back in the IMSA WeatherTech Prototype points battle

bySteve Cole Smith| PUBLISHED Sep 19, 2016 5:35 AM
Wayne Taylor Wins Big IMSA Race, Splurges By Flying Home on Southwest, Seat 28B

Note to Konica Minolta: Wayne Taylor, owner of the Wayne Taylor Racing Konica Minolta Chevrolet Corvette Daytona Prototype, is not wasting your sponsorship dollars.

His team, with sons Ricky and Jordan Taylor driving, crushed the competition at the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship Lone Star Le Mans this weekend. Can you imagine any winning NASCAR Sprint Cup team owner flying home on Southwest? Maybe Roger Penske heading back to Detroit from the IndyCar race in Sonoma on Greyhound?


As the IMSA WeatherTech season winds down to the finale in two weeks – Petit Le Mans at Road Atlanta – there is a genuine three-car race for the Championship: The Taylor car, which is seven points behind the leader, the No. 31 Action Express Whelen Corvette DP of Eric Curran and Dane Cameron, which is one point ahead of its team car, the current champion No. 5 Action Express Mustang Sampling Corvette of Christian Fittipaldi and Joao Barbosa.

Just as interesting: Petit will be the last race, ever, for the Daytona Prototype cars, which have done yeoman’s duty since the Grand-Am series was formed. But the design has grown long in the tooth, and next year, IMSA will transition to Prototype cars that much more resemble the Prototype P2 cars of the sort that ran in the American Le Mans Series, which are presently the two Mazdas and the Michael Shank Racing Honda-Ligier, which, as we mentioned in another post, distinguished itself by running off the track at COTA and collecting a massive WeatherTech sign, and driving half a lap with it in front of the car.

The championships in the Prototype Challenge class (which have one more year of eligibility before they, like the Daytona Prototypes, become fern planters) and the GT Daytona class are pretty much settled, but the GT Le Mans class will come down to Road Atlanta to decide the title. Presently the No. 4 Corvette C7.R of Tommy Milner and Oliver Gavin has a small lead over the No. 67 Ganassi Ford GT of Richard Westbrook and Ryan Briscoe.

The 10-hour Petit Le Mans is always a good race. And Southwest flies right into Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport.

Fortunately, Wayne Taylor is small and streamlined, and fits in a Southwest middle seat nicely.