No. 10 Konica Minolta Acura ARX-05 will lead the 61-car IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship field to green for the 60th Running of the Rolex 24 at DAYTONA. Co-drivers Ricky Taylor, Filipe Albuquerque, Will Stevens and Alexander Rossi will attempt to secure the team’s record fourth consecutive victory and their fifth in six years. As Grand Marshal, Wayne Taylor, Team Owner of the No. 10 Konica Minolta Acura ARX-05, will have the honor of giving the starting command. The race, which acts as a home event for himself and son, Ricky, is a unique chance for the family to make history.
Taylor, a two-time winner of the Rolex 24 as a driver, and a four-time winner as a team owner, is chasing a record-breaking fourth consecutive overall victory in this year’s event. Wayne Taylor Racing has emerged victorious in four of the past five contests. Triumph for Taylor and his team on January 29th will tie the all-time record for overall victories by a team and extend their unmatched run of dominance at Daytona in the DPi era.
“It’s the 60th anniversary of the Rolex 24 at DAYTONA and we’re going for four straight wins in a row,” said Team Owner Wayne Taylor. “As we all know, we won the pole by winning the Roar and we’ve done all the right things so far. We have really good drivers and really good team and the weather conditions are certainly going to play a significant role in this race. Driving in 31-35 degree temperatures is going to make it extremely hard for guys to get out of the pits and keep it on the track when the surface is so cold. I see lots of yellows coming and it’s important for us to stay on the lead lap and try and be fast at the very end. It’s the biggest field in recent memory so it’s going to be fun. I look forward to this race and I love everything about it. Looking forward to the start.”
After becoming the most prolific qualifier in IMSA history in 2021 and winning the Michelin Endurance Cup, veteran and two-time IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Champion Ricky Taylor returns for a full-time season with extreme focus on achieving a third Rolex 24 at DAYTONA victory and a second in row.
“It’s such a special feeling to start on the pole for the Rolex 24,” said Ricky Taylor. “Although, from a race perspective, the impact is minimal compared to other events, the prestige of leading the field to green for the biggest race of the year is a fantastic feeling. The strategy is always based around staying on the lead lap and having a car in good condition to go to the finish. Starting from the front doesn’t change our end goal so we will stick to the plan that seems to have worked a few times in the past especially with the amount of cars on track. We faced a bit of adversity at the Roar with some eventful sessions. But the team is performing very well and executing as always. So that’s all we can hope to take through to the race.”
Returning full time co-driver of the No. 10 Konica Minolta Acura ARX-05 and 2021 Michelin Endurance Cup Champion Filipe Albuquerque, who has won at Daytona twice in DPi and once in GT machinery, looks to achieve victory with WTR for the second consecutive year.
"We started 2022 on the right foot after winning the qualifying race and gained some points,” acknowledged Filipe Albuquerque. “It's good to start on pole for the race, but it doesn't mean much in terms of the results of the race. You can see that we started from last in a 100-minute race and we ended up winning. It's going to be a long race, but the most important part is going to be avoiding contact with the GTDs, LMP2s and other cars since there are going to be 61 cars on track. I don't think a lot of people are going to take risks in the beginning. We'll evaluate the pace of everyone and then we need to learn during the few days in between the Roar and Rolex on how we can go faster, so we can be there in the last hour."
Will Stevens will make his IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship racing debut during the Rolex 24. He’ll look to carry a strong result into his endurance driver role for the remainder of the season.
“Starting on pole is obviously the best place to start, it’s the position to get the cleanest start let’s say and hopefully be able to control the pace of the race from there,” explained Will Stevens. “Any advantage we can get with the field being so tight in terms of performance we need to try and gain from. I think the main priority is to keep our race car in good shape until the morning. With these long races, you can’t win in the first few hours, but on the other hand, you have to stay in contention as much as you can. There really is no room to just cruise around. It’s all about risk reward for 20 hours of the race. The final few hours are where we can really start to push towards the end! From the first test day that I completed with these guys, I could see why they have been so successful here. That exact feeling has carried through every day at the Roar. The atmosphere in the team is great and everyone is pushing towards the exact same end goal. We have worked through the things we need to in order to make sure we have the best race car come the start of the Rolex 24 on Saturday. Ricky and Filipe did an awesome job in the Roar and now we have a few more days to make that car even better in the areas we know we need to work on.”
Seven-time INDYCAR race winner, 2016 Indianapolis 500 champion, 2021 Baja 1000 Winner, 2021 Rolex 24 Champion and 2021 Endurance Cup Champion Alexander Rossi will attempt to score another prestigious victory with Wayne Taylor Racing at the 2022 Rolex.
“Race week is finally here and I can’t wait to get back on track and get to work,” said Alexander Rossi. “The team did an amazing job yet again during the Roar and we were able to make the most of the qualifying race which has afforded us the opportunity to start the race from pole. We know that there is a long way to go and a huge amount of eyeballs are on us as we try to go for four-in-a-row so we will have to make sure that we are up to the challenge."
Thursday, January 27th will mark the start of the Rolex 24 at DAYTONA weekend with Practice 1 at 11:05 a.m. EST. Green flag for the 24-hour battle drops at 1:40 pm EST on January 29th.
ABOUT KONICA MINOLTA Konica Minolta Business Solutions U.S.A., Inc. is reshaping and revolutionizing the Workplace of the Future. The company guides and supports its clients’ digital transformation through its expansive office technology portfolio, including IT Services (All Covered), intelligent information management, managed print services and industrial and commercial print solutions. Konica Minolta has been included on CRN’s MSP 500 list nine times and The World Technology Awards recently named the company a finalist in the IT Software category. Konica Minolta has been recognized as the #1 Brand for Customer Loyalty in the MFP Office Copier Market by Brand Keys for fourteen consecutive years, and received Keypoint Intelligence’s BLI 2021 A3 Line of The Year Award and BLI 2021-2023 Most Color Consistent A3 Brand Award for its bizhub i-Series. Konica Minolta, Inc. has been named to the Dow Jones Sustainability World Index for nine consecutive years and has spent four years on the Global 100 Most Sustainable Corporations in the World list. Konica Minolta partners with its clients to give shape to ideas and works to bring value to our society. For more information, please visit us online and follow Konica Minolta on Facebook, YouTube, LinkedIn and Twitter. The No. 10 Konica Minolta Acura ARX-05 effort and Wayne Taylor Racing is supported by an outstanding lineup of partners including Harrison Contracting, Acura Motorsports, Hammer Nutrition and CIT.