The name Taylor carries a legacy of success in sports car racing. Conversely, the name Penske is recognized as a motorsports powerhouse across the world. The two forces will come together in 2018 as Ricky Taylor, the son of renowned champion Wayne Taylor, will pilot the No. 7 Acura ARX-05 DPi for the new Acura Team Penske making its sports car return in the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship this season.
The 27-year-old Taylor is coming off his first career championship in the IMSA WeatherTech Series as he enjoyed a dream season racing with his younger brother, Jordan, for the family-owned Wayne Taylor Racing (WTR) organization. The 2017 season brought unprecedented success for the Taylors as they opened with back-to-back victories in the two most prestigious races on the schedule, the Rolex 24 at Daytona and the 12 Hours of Sebring. Those victories were followed by three more consecutive wins on the Streets of Long Beach, the Circuit of the Americas and the Streets of Belle Isle in Detroit. The record five straight victories to open a season, combined with two podium finishes at Road America and Laguna Seca Raceway, gave the brothers all they needed to secure their first series championship ahead of Taylor’s new Acura Team Penske teammate, Dane Cameron.
After beginning his racing career at a young age in go-karts, Ricky Taylor contemplated a path to open-wheel racing before turning his attention to sports cars. His father provided an opportunity to race for his team in the 2008 Rolex 24 at Daytona for his first event and Taylor responded by helping the team to a fifth-place finish. He became a full-time sports car driver in 2009 and joined the Wayne Taylor Racing team one year later.
Taylor’s first series victory came in 2010 at Lime Rock Park and he continued with the family team through the 2012 season before moving to the VISIT FLORIDA team as his brother took his spot at WTR. Following WTR’s championship season of 2013, Ricky Taylor moved back to team up with his younger brother for the first time. Between 2014-2016, the brothers combined for seven series victories, setting the stage for the magical 2017 championship season.
In 2018, three-time Indianapolis 500 winner and Verizon IndyCar Series (VICS) legend, Helio Castroneves, will join Taylor as co-drivers of the No. 7 ARX-05 for Acura Team Penske. VICS veteran Graham Rahal will team the duo for the endurance races at Daytona, Sebring and Petit Le Mans at Road Atlanta.
In 109 career IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship starts, Taylor has produced 19 victories, 45 podium finishes and 21 pole positions. He owns three wins apiece at Lime Rock, Belle Isle and Long Beach.
Taylor Key Accomplishments
- 2017 IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship Prototype Champion
- Won the first five IMSA WeatherTech Series races in 2017, including the prestigious Rolex 24 at Daytona and the 12 Hours of Sebring
- Tested a Verizon IndyCar Series car for Team Penske on the Homestead-Miami Speedway road course in February of 2017
- Fifth-place finish in the GTE AM class at the 24 Hours of Le Mans in 2013