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.”