This past weekend was the 55th running of the Rolex 24 Hours of Daytona, and it was one for the record books. It was the first race for the new Cadillac Daytona Prototype race car, known as the DPi-V.R, that was unveiled back in November. Expectations were set very high and things couldn’t have worked out better for them. That’s because the No. 10 Konica Minolta DPi-V.R. of Wayne Taylor Racing finished in first place overall.
The Wayne Taylor race team consisted of four drivers, Wayne’s two sons Ricky and Jordan, Max Angelelli, and NASCAR legend Jeff Gordon. Gordon recently retired and he felt it was the perfect time to get back in a race car to compete in the 24hr race. This was the first time he had entered in nearly 10 years. Back in 2007, he was the fourth man of the Wayne Taylor race team that included Wayne himself, and Max Angelelli, and Jan Magnussen. The team managed to finish a respectable third place in their class in the 2007 race.
At the 2017 event, the Cadillac DPi-V.R. put on quite the dominating performance at it’s debut race. Not only did Gordon and the Wayne Taylor race team finish in first place overall, but the Mustang Sampling Racing team finished in second place overall, giving the Cadillac an extremely respectable 1-2 finish. The win didn’t come without controversy though. With 16 minutes left in the race, Ricky Taylor was in second place behind Felipe Albuquerque in the Mustang Sampling Cadillac and it appeared as if that’s how the race would end. But with just 7 minutes remaining, Taylor managed to catch up to Albuquerque. As the two drivers fought for position as they entered the apex of turn one, they briefly made contact which sent Albuquerque spinning out of control and allowed Taylor to take home the victory. In a great display of driving, Albuquerque quickly regained control and got back on the track to maintain second place.
Since this was Cadillac’s first attempt at re-entering the highly competitive Prototype racing since the LMP Northstar project in 2000, they wanted to come out with a something really special while also helping to increase sales. So many of the key features of the new DPi-V.R. came straight from Cadillac’s street going cars. Cosmetically, engineers wanted the race car to have an unmistakable Cadillac presence. So they included styling features like vertical lighting signatures, V-performance wheels, V-performance emblems, and even the cooling vents and air intake were designed at the Cadillac design studio. It’s also been fitted with the backup camera used in the CT6 model. Providing the power is the same 6.2L V8 that was used in the fifth generation CTS-V and Escalade. Although it’s been race tuned to provide approximately 600hp without the help from power adders like the supercharger found on the 640hp CTS-V.