The No. 10 Konica Minolta Cadillac DPi-V.R trio of full-time co-drivers Jordan Taylor and Renger van der Zande and third driver Ryan Hunter-Reay closed the annual Roar Before the Rolex 24 Test Days by clocking the fastest lap among the 50-car field Sunday afternoon for the second time this weekend. They will open defense of the team’s 2017 Rolex 24 At Daytona victory and 2017 driver and team championships when competitors return to Daytona (Fla.) International Speedway for the traditional season-opening endurance marathon Jan. 25 to 28.
Taylor, who with older brother Ricky Taylor co-drove to last year’s Rolex 24 victory alongside veteran Italian Max “The Ax” Angelelli and four-time NASCAR Cup Series champion Jeff Gordon, was fastest overall in today’s last of seven test sessions for the weekend, as well as during Saturday’s first of three test sessions. The Konica Minolta Cadillac DPi-V.R clocked top-three times in each of the seven test sessions with each of its three drivers accounting for the team’s fastest lap in at least one session.
Van der Zande, the Dutch driver who came to the team for the 2018 season after Ricky Taylor left to join the new, two-car Team Penske Prototype-class team, clocked the Konica Minolta Cadillac DPi-V.R’s fastest lap of the weekend during a new 15-minute qualifying-style session that was added this season to the Roar test days weekend schedule. It was used to determine each team’s pit stall and garage locations during Rolex 24 race weekend three weekends hence. Van der Zande’s lap of 1 minute, 36.481 seconds at 132.828 mph around the 3.56-mile speedway road course was fourth-best overall for the session and for the weekend.
The No. 10 Konica Minolta Cadillac DPi-V.R logged 178 total laps during the three-day test, covering 633 trouble-free miles.
Rolex 24 race weekend begins with practice and qualifying Thursday, Jan. 25, with the twice-around-the-clock event set to begin at 2:40 p.m. EST Saturday, Jan. 27, with live television coverage beginning on the FOX broadcast network at 2 p.m.