SBRS: Ricky Taylor Southern Regional Moroso summary

Ricky Taylor Has Great Success With Win and Pole In Skip Barber Southern Regional Series Altamonte Springs, Florida (December 7, 2005) -- Ricky Taylor is celebrating after a hugely successful weekend in the Skip Barber Southern Regional Series...

Ricky Taylor Has Great Success With Win and Pole In Skip Barber Southern Regional Series

Altamonte Springs, Florida (December 7, 2005) -- Ricky Taylor is celebrating after a hugely successful weekend in the Skip Barber Southern Regional Series at Moroso Motorsports Park in West Pam Beach, Florida, where he sat on the pole both days and collected his first car racing victory.

"It was a great weekend. I'm really excited to have my first car racing win under my belt now," said the 16-year-old Taylor, son of endurance racing champion Wayne Taylor.

This was the younger Taylor's second of six races in the Skip Barber Southern Regional Series winter edition. He previously won a pole and finished both eighth and second in the two-day race weekend. Taylor's sponsors for the series include Sonny's BBQ, Arai Helmets and OMP.

In Saturday's activities, Taylor qualified on the pole by 1.191 seconds over Michael Gomez with a 1:37.450 and an average speed of 83.12 mph. In race one, he led the first three laps until Michael Gomez passed him in turn one. Gomez then led until lap eight when Taylor repassed him going into turn one. Taylor held on to the lead for the rest of the race and collected his first victory.

On Sunday, the pole was set by the result from the first day, thus putting Taylor on the pole again. He battled in the second race again with challenger Michael Gomez, who passed him on the start and led for a few laps. Taylor was able to get by him going into turn one and led for four laps until they swapped positions again. The top three drivers went three wide into turn one and Taylor jumped back into the lead. Gomez was able to overtake Taylor in the last corner with just four laps to go and maintained the lead to the end. Taylor settled for second place in a very close and competitive battle.

"It was quite a race," said the budding young driver who resides in Altamonte Springs, Florida. "We swapped positions and went back and forth the entire race. I really enjoyed the racing battle with Michael."

While the younger Taylor was busy racing this weekend, his racing father, Wayne Taylor, was on a hectic appearance schedule after winning the 2005 Grand American Rolex Sports Car Driver and Team Championship, with his co-driver Max Angelelli. They drove the No. 10 SunTrust Pontiac Riley Mk.XI to five victories and became the winningest Daytona Prototype team and Grand American history with eight victories in just two seasons. Taylor and Angelelli were in Indianapolis Saturday evening to accept the prestigious top honor in the Road Racing category by the American Automotive Racing Writers and Broadcaster Association (AARWBA).

"I'm really proud of Ricky and the success he had this past weekend," said the three-time endurance champion Wayne Taylor. "I only wish I could have been there. He obviously is showing real driving talent in a short amount of time racing cars. He has five years of experience in go karts, but this is his first big effort with cars."

The Skip Barber Southern Regional Series features identical 2.0-liter Dodge R/T 2000 cars. The next race is January 7-8 at Homestead/Miami Speedway.

-barbara burns-

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