As the competitors in the Grand-Am Rolex Sports Car Series begin their final preparations for the 2010 season at Daytona International Speedway this weekend, the #10 SunTrust Ford Dallara team of Wayne Taylor Racing has named Ricky Taylor as full-time co-driver alongside Italian veteran driving ace and former series champion Max Angelelli.
Taylor, the 20-year-old son of team owner and three-time sports car racing champion Wayne Taylor, returns to the team after co-driving the #10 SunTrust entry to a fifth-place finish in the 2008 season-opening Rolex 24 At Daytona.
From there, the Skip Barber Southern Series champion and National Series runner-up went on to drive 19 more races the last two seasons in Rolex Series prototypes for Cincinnati-based Doran Racing and Texas-based Beyer Racing with three top-five and 12 top-10 finishes to his credit, along with 33 laps led this past season.
Ricky will kick off the 2010 season January 30-31 co-driving with Angelelli, Wayne Taylor and Portuguese former F1 driver Pedro Lamy in the 48th Rolex 24, testing for which takes place at Daytona Friday through Sunday in the annual Roar Before the 24.
“This is exciting in a number of respects as a team owner and a father,” said Wayne Taylor, who co-drove with Angelelli to the 2005 Rolex Series championship in the SunTrust team's second season in the series. “I feel it's a positive and compelling story for SunTrust and all of our sponsors.
“Ricky is the type of young driver who represents the future of this sport and we feel he has all the tools necessary to help us continue to contend for championships. I think Brian (Frisselle) did a fantastic job co-driving with Max this past season with a couple of race wins, four other podium finishes, and putting us in position to win the championship down to the final race. We know Brian has a bright future and we wish him all the best.”
“SunTrust has been a huge part of our family's life for so many years and I am glad that I can continue to carry the torch,” continued Ricky Taylor. “There are a lot of expectations that go with this position, but that's what racing for the championship is all about, and I've been around it all my life. Max has always been a mentor to me, and now I'll get to be there every day, driving with him and for SunTrust, which is truly an honour. I think it's going to be a lot of fun.”
“We are thrilled to welcome Ricky to the SunTrust team on a full-time basis as Max Angelelli's co-driver in our quest to bring the Rolex Series championship back to SunTrust,” added Rilla Delorier, executive vice president and chief marketing officer, SunTrust Banks, Inc.
“He is one of the brightest young stars in all of road racing and is a bright young man who will represent us extremely well at the racetrack.”