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Cadillac Confirms PWC Return; Taylors Complete SprintX Lineup

Cadillac confirms PWC return, Taylor brothers for SprintX…

Photo: Richard Prince/GM

Photo: Richard Prince/GM

Cadillac Racing drivers Johnny O’Connell and Michael Cooper will return to Pirelli World Challenge competition and will be joined by brothers Ricky and Jordan Taylor for the five SprintX rounds, the manufacturer announced on Monday.

Four-time PWC GT driver champion O’Connell will return to the the Velocity Red No. 3 Cadillac ATS-V.R, having scored three wins last year.

Teammate Cooper posted two wins in 2016 and a pole at Barber Motorsports Park. Cooper will start his sophomore season with his No. 8 Cadillac ATS-V.R in a new Vector Blue livery.

The Taylors, meanwhile, are coming off victory in last month’s Rolex 24 at Daytona where they drove the all-new Cadillac DPi-V.R prototype.

Driver pairings for the April 28-30 SprintX opening round at VIR are forthcoming, with O’Connell and Cooper set to start the season in the Sprint St. Pete round on March 10-12.

“I’m very much looking forward to the 2017 PWC season,” O’Connell said. “We had one bad weekend last year that really cost us, and I’ve been training hard all winter looking for some redemption.

“Ricky and Jordan are doing a great job proving themselves on the world stage, especially with that great win at Daytona two weeks ago.”

Cooper is eager for the season to start and to drive with Ricky and Jordan.

“I’ve been counting down the days to the start of the season, so it’s nice that it is almost here,” he said. “Being back with Cadillac Racing is still very exciting to me and I can’t wait to get my sophomore season in the GT class started.

“All of the Cadillac fans should be as excited as I am to have Jordan and Ricky with us for the SprintX races this year.

“Jordan has tested with us numerous times the last few years, so I’m sure they’ll slot right in and make their presence known.”

Ricky Taylor is looking forward to running in a sprint format again.

“I am extremely excited to share the ATS-V.R with the guys,” he said. “I have always been a huge fan of the ATS-V.R program and of Johnny and Michael, so getting a chance to contribute to the team and hopefully another championship is a great opportunity.

“I haven’t done a real sprint race in quite a few years now, so it is very exciting.”

Jordan Taylor, meanwhile, echoed his brother’s thoughts.

“These races have more of a sprint race feel from what we’re used to,” Jordan said. “Our shortest race is 100 minutes, at Detroit and Long Beach.

“Those races also have just one pit stop, so I feel like we can draw from those experiences. You’re going to have to be on top of your game to win these races; there is no room for error in such short events.”

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35 Comments

35 Comments

  1. seth

    February 13, 2017 at 1:19 pm

    Awesome news for American sports car racing, will be great to see the Taylors in these sprints.

  2. kv

    February 13, 2017 at 1:33 pm

    THE Caddy ats v r,NEEDS A LOT OF ATTENTION to the front end AERO ! THAT CAR HANDLES LIKE A SLOTCAR and has good power,but drag must be high ,even for a sedan !

    • Not a fan of stupid

      February 13, 2017 at 1:56 pm

      Oh yeah because 5 wins showed it was a poor car and needs aero work? Armchair genius at work again

  3. JeffT

    February 13, 2017 at 1:34 pm

    This Sprint X thing is still going on? Sigh…

  4. Olly

    February 13, 2017 at 1:38 pm

    Something to keep me into PWC 😀.

  5. David Chaste

    February 13, 2017 at 1:45 pm

    Michael Cooper should have been the 3rd driver in the WTR car for Sebring and Petit…if he has the pace. But i believe he does. Sure he hasn’t quite been able to take down old man O’Connell so that’s bringing down his stock. But i think it’s because the team is built around O’connell, after all it’s still the Pratt and Miller guys. Comme on Cooper this is your year.

    • Baldy

      February 20, 2017 at 1:51 am

      Cooper did more than fine against The Old Man, as you put it, for precisely the reason you mentioned–it’s the Pratt/Miller guys tuned to Johnny O. And yet Cooper gave O’Connell nearly all Johnny could handle to keep Cooper behind him. Yeah, Johnny had some rough treatment from officials (whether you agree with the penalties or not), but Cooper CLEARLY demonstrated his competitiveness with O’Connell from the first race last year. That’s a crap-load better than pretty damned good given the team’s familiarity with The Old Man and lack of experience with Cooper. And Cooper definitely made Pilgrim look worse than inadequate given Pilgrim’s experience with the team. Hell, I’d say Coopers showing came within single digits of matching Johnny’s performance last year even though the team and cars were new to Cooper. NOBODY, I mean NOBODY save you is seeing Cooper’s stock as “being brought down” by his performance last season. He’ll again, I’d say that O’connell’s stock is the one taking a bit of a hit if anyone’s has!

  6. Justin Porter

    February 13, 2017 at 2:07 pm

    So… Where’s the SRO homologation and customer team announcement?

    Even Acura has managed to announce interested parties for the NSX for 2018.

    • Alex

      February 13, 2017 at 2:47 pm

      lol….don’t count on it. You’ll likely see a C7 GT3 in that series before a customer Caddy. Plus the Caddy is 2x the price of other GT3 cars if it were given a price tag.

    • guest

      February 13, 2017 at 3:24 pm

      General Motors doesn’t do top tier customer racing because they don’t want a half assed effort to make their brands look bad.

      • hah

        February 13, 2017 at 3:30 pm

        Which in turn makes them look bad to anyone that actually cares about racing.

      • Alex

        February 13, 2017 at 3:45 pm

        “Half assed”? lol. You clearly don’t follow Callaway Competition. The fact that this team builds their own cars AND beat teams with 10x their budget is no small feat. Lets not forget they almost won the ADAC GT Title last year (but a Lambo made contact with them).

        But I will agree that its not running at the moment because they (GM) want Caddy to be their only brand representative in that series.

      • Susafan

        February 13, 2017 at 4:03 pm

        If GM was about top tier racing, they would do P1 and Blancpain…

        • David Chaste

          February 13, 2017 at 6:09 pm

          That’s wrong. Nearly all the Blancpain drivers would love to be in a GTLM or GTE Pro car instead of BlancPain.

          All the top preeminent drivers in Blancpain with name recognition are being snatched up by GTLM or GTE Pro teams. GTLm and GTE Pro are the only racing classes in the world where there are no pay-drivers.

          As far as P1, GM want their racing cars to look like the floor models. If P1 adopted that they would consider it.

          • daedalus

            February 13, 2017 at 9:01 pm

            the pro class in blancpain has all pro drivers, although some quick pay drivers choose to run in it as well because you get kicked out of pro-am if you win a race outright and the points don’t transfer to the pro class. the conveyor belt between GT3 and GTE runs both ways, ferrari factory driver giancarlo fisichella is now racing in blancpain full time this year where before he was only GTE.

          • Susafan

            February 13, 2017 at 10:15 pm

            I was referring to top tier GT3 racing when i mentioned Blancpain.

            As far as P1 goes, GM is just afraid to face big boy Factory programs. They have the money to do it, but the last time they were facing competition they got kicked ass big time (Cadillac LMP until 2002 and OPEL in DTM until 2005).

            Indy is working out because the captain calls the shots.

        • Andy Flinn

          February 16, 2017 at 11:57 am

          Susafan, clearly the fact that GM doesn’t:

          – build or campaign a factory WEC LMP1
          – campaign a factory WEC GTE Corvette program
          – support a Larbre WEC GTE program

          are all signs that GM may not think the WEC is as awesome as you think it is.

          • Larry

            February 17, 2017 at 7:32 am

            Or maybe WEC won’t bend the rules in their favor the way IMSA does.

      • Andy Flinn

        February 16, 2017 at 11:50 am

        Guest, they must ALL be “half-assed” because, aside from the factory, NOBODY races Corvette or Cadillac GTs in IMSA or PWC.

        I don’t understand how Callaway – who is not permitted to race their GT3 homologated Corvettes in IMSA or PWC – is considered a “half-assed” operation. As mentioned, they almost won an ADAC Championship in Europe last year with little or no support from GM.

    • StueyB83

      February 13, 2017 at 4:23 pm

      I’ve given up on that ever happening. As much as GT3 is supposed to be customer sports racing without caddy ever selling one there are still many other options to buy.

      Also be happy that they did a GT3 rather than do a waiver wagon.

      What I do hope is that Caddy goes and bloods themselves in the Laguna 8 hours later this year.

  7. Footlong Corndog

    February 13, 2017 at 2:18 pm

    That’s some pretty awful photoshop there Cadillac 😉

    • Mike S.

      February 13, 2017 at 3:28 pm

      Haha yeah it is. They look like they are growing into each others shoulders.

      • NaBUru38

        February 16, 2017 at 8:39 am

        The driver’s suits are reflected on the bodywork. That’s an actual photo.

  8. Alex

    February 13, 2017 at 2:52 pm

    Looks like they’re putting all their eggs in both PWC baskets for this season. I’m sure they’ll do fine (as its the only factory team). Lets hope we can finally see a Vette GT3 race in this series in the near future…

    • Bob

      February 13, 2017 at 6:39 pm

      Umm, no it’s not the only factory team. Spreading that misinfo needs to stop.

      • Alex

        February 14, 2017 at 7:48 am

        Lol. Misinfo? Name another full blown factory team in PWC (& not just a private team that just has factory support)? I’ll wait…

        • Bob

          February 14, 2017 at 10:00 am

          Acura-Realtime, McLaren-KPax are analogous to Cadillac-PME.

          • Alex

            February 14, 2017 at 3:44 pm

            Bob, I’ll admit that the Acura entry is the only other factory team (starting for this year). Lets be honest, Caddy has been the only true factory team in that series for quite a long time. Kpax is not a direct factory entry. Its a customer team with support.

  9. Juninho

    February 13, 2017 at 4:33 pm

    Final PWC 2017
    New Imsa WC in 2018

  10. Psychlops924

    February 13, 2017 at 4:45 pm

    Yes! This means I’ll get to see the Taylor brothers when they come to Utah. Awesome!

  11. Tim

    February 13, 2017 at 7:48 pm

    I gotta say, one battle I would love to see is the Caddy VS the new Lexus. Hopefully Lexus will venture to PWC also

    • Mo

      February 13, 2017 at 8:23 pm

      You just might see Lexus in GTLM and maybe a customer team in PWC.

      • Racing realist

        February 13, 2017 at 10:14 pm

        Not a chance unless the GT3/GTE convergence picks up steam. Think it is doomed to be a GT3 and with factory money gone will 3GT have any cash left for ’18?

  12. southcove

    February 14, 2017 at 11:05 am

    Do they run the same chassis in the SprintX as in the normal PWC events…? Just wondering about damage, wear and tear, different size fuel cell. Logic says no, two more cars.

    • Alex

      February 14, 2017 at 5:06 pm

      I believe they have 4 total cars they built as last year they had to use one or two extra chassis during the season.

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