We’re big race fans here at GM Authority, so when we got the news that we were to interview Wayne Taylor Racing’s Ricky and Jordan Taylor on the floor of the 2017 New York International Auto Show, we were expectedly thrilled. The brothers Taylor are currently enjoying a perfect start to their 2017 IMSA campaign after having won the season-opening 24 Hours of Daytona and the subsequent 12 Hours of Sebring and Long Beach GP, so there was plenty to ask the driver pairing about.
We casually chatted with the Taylor brothers about their new Cadillac DPi-V.R and racing for nearly 40-minutes (they’re cool like that) so we’ve broken up our interview into easily digestible chunks that represent some of the more interesting topics we covered in our short sit-down.
On The New Cadillac DPi-V.R Sharing A Rear View Mirror With The CT6..
Ricky Taylor: “We don’t use the in-car radar (like the Corvette C7.R) because we’re in the top class, but we do use the same rearview camera as the CTS-V (and CT6)..”
“Its pretty weird that we use the exact same hardware and everything. It’s literally the exact same piece. Normally our cockpits are bit unrefined, so to have something like that in there is kind of fancy and cool.”
Jordan Taylor: “We were actually driven here in a CT6 and I hadn’t seen it before, so when I got in I was like “..that’s actually the exact same piece (that’s in our racecar).”
“The old (rear-view) monitor in our Corvette DP was so bad. It was reverse image, so sometimes it would switch and you’d be like ‘okay, is he coming from the right side or the left side?'”
On How They Got Their Racing Start..
JT: “Well we initially never wanted to get into it. We weren’t that interested. When we were little we’d go to the racetrack with our dad (Wayne Taylor) and it was normal for us, so we’d just kick the soccer ball at the racetrack. And then when he retired from driving and sort of spent more time with us, we got into go karting. It was just a fun, once a month type thing. It wasn’t serious at all. But once he retired from driving and showed us more about it, we got hooked basically.”
On Racing With Their Dad At Daytona..
RT: That’s one of the best (memories) because, I mean, to do the 24 hour..”
JT: “Yeah, we were on the podium. That was really cool. We could have one it too, which would have been unbelievable.”
“One of the other drivers spun out of Turn 1, and instead of just holding the brake or something he flicked it back across the racetrack and I had to avoid him. I went through the grass and we had to pit, so we didn’t win.”
On Cadillac Racing Newcomer Michael Cooper..
RT: “..(Michael) started autocrossing when he was in his mid-20s and then he just got to know people (to get a professional drive).”
“You almost want to avoid the normal path because then you;’re just up against everybody else and it’s so hard to stand out. There’s so many good drivers, but today even a driver like Michael Schumacher might have a hard time standing out.”
JT: “He proved you don’t have to have lots of money to do it the normal way. He met the right people. He drove in front of Johnny O’Connell and Johnny was impressed and Johnny pretty much helped sell him to Cadillac, saying “this guy’s good.”
Jordan On How He Got A Start To His Professional Career With GM..
JT: For me, it was all about right place right time. I was racing a Mazda and the engine blew up. Mazda wasn’t going to give us an engine for the next race, so I was going to miss it. GM then said, ‘well we have an open spot with Johnny (O’Connell).’ I drove with Johnny for one race and that was it. So if the engine didn’t blow up, I never would have raced a GM car.”
Ricky On His Recent IndyCar Test..
RT: “..(the IndyCar test) was a lot of fun. Those cars have crazy downforce. The (Cadillac) DPi is a lot more slippery and efficient. But the IndyCar is a whole different racecar. It actually feels much softer because of the tires. The wheels are small and the tires are really big.”
“I actually hadn’t driven an open cockpit car for probably 10 years. I think the last time was at Skip Barber Star Mazda Championship. I was shocked at how affected I was…like when I saw a bird. (laughs) You see IndyCar drivers driving around all the time and they don’t really get hit by birds, but seeing a bird affected me more than I thought.”
And Finally, On Driveway Karting..
JT: Yeah! That’s a friend of ours. That’s not our house. It’d be awesome if it was our house though. It’s a lot of fun. It’s not the safest thing but…. (laughs)”
Both Jordan and Ricky will take to the track this weekend, pairing with Cadillac Racing’s Michael Cooper and Johnny O’Connell in the team’s two Cadillac ATS-V.R for the first Sprint-X race of the season. Following their World-Challenge Sprint-X debut, the pairing will be back in their usual spot behind the wheel of the No. 10 Cadillac DPi-V.R in the IMSA series, which will head to Circuit of the Americas in Austin, Texas later this month.