For Jordan's multitude of accomplishments in IMSA racing, Jordan Taylor had never claimed a pole position at Road America. Until now.
In difficult conditions Saturday afternoon, middling between wet and drying, Taylor guided the No. 3 Corvette Racing Chevrolet Corvette C8.R to the top qualifying spot in GT Le Mans (GTLM) for the IMSA SportsCar Weekend race on Sunday.
While it was the 19th pole position of Taylor’s stellar career, it was his first at Road America a favorite track among nearly every driver.
Taylor was pleased to finally add qualifying honors at the high-speed, 4.048-mile, 14-turn road course to his lengthy list of achievements.
Especially in the treacherous conditions, with the track dampened by rain just before the session began.
“It feels good,” Taylor said. “It’s great to be back at Road America, it’s one of our favorite events of the year. It’s Corvette Racing’s 20th time here, so it’s special to be part of that kind of history at this track.
“Yeah, it was definitely a tricky session with in-between conditions.
We had a wet session yesterday, dry this morning and almost kind of in the middle for qualifying.”
Taylor’s top lap of 2 minutes, 20.979 seconds (103.368 mph) bested teammate Nick Tandy in the No. 4 Corvette by 0.627 seconds. Taylor and co-driver Antonio Garcia, the defending Road America class winners, will lead the GTLM field to green ahead of Tandy and Tommy Milner in the No. 4 Corvette, with Cooper MacNeil and Matt Campbell starting third in the No. 79 WeatherTech Racing Porsche 911 RSR-19.
Taylor, seeking his 25th career win on Sunday, said the balance of risk versus reward is especially stressful in conditions like Saturday.
He said Friday evening’s practice in wetter conditions helped the team gauge how to approach qualifying.
“Heading into qualifying, we had some confidence to know what to expect with tire pressures and how to warm up the tire,” he said.
“It was a little drier than yesterday, with not as much standing water. Getting the lap time in early when the tire was at its peak is what got us the pole.
“We almost replicated the lap at the end, but I think that was just figuring out where to go in the wet.
The C8.R was consistent and it was strong. It’s another 1-2 in qualifying for Corvette Racing, so that bodes well for us in the race, no matter if the race is wet or dry.”