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Old 12 May 2017, 14:12 (Ref:3733013)   #2581
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The Taylor kids it can be argued are there in part because of their father Wayne's ties to GM, but they're earning their keep and both have impressed the guys at Corvette Racing. And if anything, they're as good as if not better behind the wheel than their old man was, and Wayne was more than plenty formidable in his time.
As late as last summer Corvette Racing management had written off Ricky Taylor as fast but flappable. He has shown pace throughout his career, but I think Daytona 2017 with the nerve he showed in beating the AXR team he has shown enough for me that he is now on little brother's level, which is right in amongst the best drivers in the world (GTLM and now with this Cadillac experience, factory LMP1 level).

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Old 12 May 2017, 17:56 (Ref:3733038)   #2582
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WTR fastest through the fiddly bits, down on the straights.

That's commitment/setup speed. Not power.

Fastest car in a straight line? The Banana Boat of JDC/Miller.

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Old 12 May 2017, 22:08 (Ref:3733076)   #2583
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I don't see why GM would "put up some money" to run at Le Mans when about 90% of their market is in the United States. You could run a different GM brand I suppose but they're currently trying to offload Opel/Vauxhall so that isn't the best one to use. Chevrolet I guess but European Chevys are just Daewoos, hardly a brand you'd spend a quarter of a billion on for a racing project. I'd understand Mazda more, and Nissan but GM made the right choice to run IMSA rather than WEC for sure.

As for drivers, there's a good reason only Toyota have Japanese drivers and nobody else seems to consider them. German drivers turn up in most cars regardless of nationality. Japanese drivers rarely turn up outside Japanese brands. I think nationality plays too much of a role in the driver selection.
Hirakawa in ELMS is Japanese, so... what's your issue with drivers of Asian decent? There's plenty to choose from on the grid. Tung in the DC lmp2, Cheng in the other car, Clearwater has two Asian drivers in addition to the 3 Toyota employ. You could even count Chandhok if you wanna get technical. Those are only current drivers, the list of previous Asian drivers in non-Asian cars is long.

BTW, the GM to lmp1 thing was a joke. It's obvious they'd rather run in a series they can win on the cheap. Don't think they'd object to doing something that's international, you know, like they did while in WTCC.
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Old 12 May 2017, 22:17 (Ref:3733077)   #2584
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No, that's downforce. The Riley is fast in many of the same places and slow in many the same places relative to the other Gibson cars, and notably looking at the speed traps seems to accelerate significantly slower than the #10. (which usually happens because you have less power)

#85 is unsurprisingly the slowest car in the field in the most downforce dependent part of the track.
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Old 12 May 2017, 22:48 (Ref:3733081)   #2585
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Hirakawa in ELMS is Japanese, so... what's your issue with drivers of Asian decent? There's plenty to choose from on the grid. Tung in the DC lmp2, Cheng in the other car, Clearwater has two Asian drivers in addition to the 3 Toyota employ. You could even count Chandhok if you wanna get technical. Those are only current drivers, the list of previous Asian drivers in non-Asian cars is long.

BTW, the GM to lmp1 thing was a joke. It's obvious they'd rather run in a series they can win on the cheap. Don't think they'd object to doing something that's international, you know, like they did while in WTCC.
We're talking about factory cars. The fact you've had to go all the way down to GTE Am kinda proves my point. There's plenty who are good enough for GTE Am, LMP2 Am seats and ELMS. But there's a sizeable gap between those seats and a P1 works team. Toyota driver selection is nationalistic and often very short sighted. They're even managing to put a Japanese driver in every car now. Nationality is clearly a massive factor in the decision making.

There is no problem with drivers of Asian decent and its a ridiculous leap to suggest that it's because of that. However I don't think there is currently a Japanese driver (no idea why you're talking about Chandock or Cheng) that is as good as the others right now. I also don't think there's drivers from many other nationalities that are good enough either. And if we had a Mexican LMP1 team that insisted on a Mexican because of nationality over the better options then I'd say the exact same thing there again. You're making the error that I'm saying Japanese drivers are not good because they are Japanese. In reality what I'm saying is I don't believe there are currently any that are good enough for the seat. There are also currently no Scottish or Welsh drivers that are good enough for a LMP1 seat. That doesn't make those nationalities bad, it just means currently there isn't one. I think if national flags were stripped out of it then the Toyota line up would look very different.

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Old 12 May 2017, 23:36 (Ref:3733087)   #2586
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We're talking about factory cars. The fact you've had to go all the way down to GTE Am kinda proves my point. There's plenty who are good enough for GTE Am, LMP2 Am seats and ELMS. But there's a sizeable gap between those seats and a P1 works team. Toyota driver selection is nationalistic and often very short sighted. They're even managing to put a Japanese driver in every car now. Nationality is clearly a massive factor in the decision making.

There is no problem with drivers of Asian decent and its a ridiculous leap to suggest that it's because of that. However I don't think there is currently a Japanese driver (no idea why you're talking about Chandock or Cheng) that is as good as the others right now. I also don't think there's drivers from many other nationalities that are good enough either. And if we had a Mexican LMP1 team that insisted on a Mexican because of nationality over the better options then I'd say the exact same thing there again. You're making the error that I'm saying Japanese drivers are not good because they are Japanese. In reality what I'm saying is I don't believe there are currently any that are good enough for the seat. There are also currently no Scottish or Welsh drivers that are good enough for a LMP1 seat. That doesn't make those nationalities bad, it just means currently there isn't one. I think if national flags were stripped out of it then the Toyota line up would look very different.
Making an error? You brought it up. You suggested they stay in their country or with their country team for a reason, the reason being they're not good enough except for nationalistic reasons. Now you're backtracking. It seemed to me like you think Asian drivers aren't good enough because you said "no one considers them" except Asian teams/manufacturers. I don't care really, just think it's funny you're trying to discount them.

Tell me, if nationality wasn't a factor what would be the difference in picking Lotterer over Nakajima? They ran the same car(s) (even teammates) in Japan and Lotterer has came out on top less than Nakajima. If the roles were reversed and it was Lotterer in Toyota and Nakajima who got the Audi lmp1 drive, he'd have multiple Le Mans wins too. Instead, he drove for Kolles (of all people) and impressed in the older R10 and the rest is history. This if off-topic. Sorry for dragging it out. Maybe we'll see a Japanese DPi driver
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Old 13 May 2017, 06:05 (Ref:3733125)   #2587
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Don't think they'd object to doing something that's international, you know, like they did while in WTCC.
Chevy was in WTCC because GM was pushing the Chevrolet brand for mainstream (Daewoo) cars in Europe. These days their American brands only sell about 2500 cars combined in Europe. If there was any interest they would already be racing Corvettes in WEC or Cadillacs in Blancpain.
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Old 13 May 2017, 07:33 (Ref:3733132)   #2588
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Making an error? You brought it up. You suggested they stay in their country or with their country team for a reason, the reason being they're not good enough except for nationalistic reasons. Now you're backtracking. It seemed to me like you think Asian drivers aren't good enough because you said "no one considers them" except Asian teams/manufacturers. I don't care really, just think it's funny you're trying to discount them.

Tell me, if nationality wasn't a factor what would be the difference in picking Lotterer over Nakajima? They ran the same car(s) (even teammates) in Japan and Lotterer has came out on top less than Nakajima. If the roles were reversed and it was Lotterer in Toyota and Nakajima who got the Audi lmp1 drive, he'd have multiple Le Mans wins too. Instead, he drove for Kolles (of all people) and impressed in the older R10 and the rest is history. This if off-topic. Sorry for dragging it out. Maybe we'll see a Japanese DPi driver
You're making links that aren't there. I said they wouldn't be chosen if it wasn't for their nationality, not that their nationality made them bad. I don't understand what you're talking about with Lotterrer. You actually tell us the reason why he ended up in an Audi. He drove for ByKolles and impressed. If you were Audi you then have a driver who is clearly a future talent who has experience with your equipment in a car your supplying to the customer. Had Nakajima (or anyone else) did the same thing as Lotterrer they'd have ended up in an Audi as well.

I'm not going to keep saying it because you're willfully ignoring it, but I didn't say Japanese drivers are bad because they're Japanese. I just think there happens to be a lack of top quality ones right now in the same way I think there's a lack of top quality Scottish drivers right now. If Toyota weren't Japanese then I don't think any of the 3 drivers they have right now would be there tbh. They would not have been chosen for Porsche, Audi or Peugeot so why would they be for Toyota if not for the flag?

What does this have to do with DPi? To answer the original question, I think the Taylor should have been considered for the third Toyota but they had the wrong flag by their name. And if Peugeot return I think we'll see the exact same thing - Taylors won't get a look when they deserve it.
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Old 13 May 2017, 18:23 (Ref:3733264)   #2589
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Before this thread gets torpedoed to hell for probably the upteenth time, if someone like Nakajima or Kobyiashi (mind you, spelling has never been a strong point of mine, no offense, though I should know the spelling at least of Nakajima though my studies of World War II aircraft, the company which is now known as Subaru Corporation/FHI, which BTW Toyota is a stakeholder in) got a test at Audi and impressed, they could've driven for them. You have to remember also that Audi Sport were for a time in the early 2000s was looking for a North American driver for their ALMS/LM program, but that, as history suggests, didn't get far, probably due to limited seats available and extant drivers being good enough.

If Audi Sport had an open seat and one of the Taylor brothers auditioned and impressed, they'd likely end up having some role at Audi Sport if they wanted the job, be it DTM or GT3 racing (as of end of last WEC season, there's no real LMP1 program at Audi Sport, of course).

Granted, the only LM related thing that they can do right now is get a ride with Corvette Racing, as Jordan has (though Audi Sport man Marcel Fassler, who has a long association with Corvette Racing and being loaned to them from Audi, has the second open seat, and has already done both Florida enduros this year), or as Ricky has done a couple of time, run in an LMP2 that's got an open Gold of Platinum seat available.

But I do think that since GM has a lot of confidence in them, they, especially Jordan, could get a seat at a LMP1 factory team if one was open.
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Old 13 May 2017, 18:25 (Ref:3733265)   #2590
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I'm not understanding the premise that Nakajima or Kobayashi are poor drivers to start with, they've been far less of a liability than Davidson's declining pace or Lapierre's crashing. Or why it would ever be expected that Toyota steal contracted national championship drivers from GM factory teams instead of using similar or higher level national championship drivers from Toyota teams. Kunimoto was weak at Spa but he beat Lotterer head to head in identical single seaters last year, what do you want?

If you were going to hire drivers from the US you'd want Bourdais, Pagenaud, and Dixon anyways. (unsurprisingly two of them are already signed to a factory sports car team and the other probably isn't available)
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Old 13 May 2017, 23:11 (Ref:3733301)   #2591
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I'm not understanding the premise that Nakajima or Kobayashi are poor drivers to start with, they've been far less of a liability than Davidson's declining pace or Lapierre's crashing. Or why it would ever be expected that Toyota steal contracted national championship drivers from GM factory teams instead of using similar or higher level national championship drivers from Toyota teams. Kunimoto was weak at Spa but he beat Lotterer head to head in identical single seaters last year, what do you want?

If you were going to hire drivers from the US you'd want Bourdais, Pagenaud, and Dixon anyways. (unsurprisingly two of them are already signed to a factory sports car team and the other probably isn't available)
That's what I was pointing out too. Nakajima and Kunimoto have beaten Lotterer (and Duval among others) in Super Formula. If the latter can be a Le Mans winner, then the others can as well. We can't pretend these lmp or dpi guys are top flight f1 caliber drivers. And even so, guys who have won in F1 (like Webber) often times don't do as good a job as these others. So who is to say the Taylor boys would beat out the guys in the lmp1 seats now?
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Old 14 May 2017, 07:52 (Ref:3733338)   #2592
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I never said they were poor. I just don't think they'd have those seats if Toyota were replaced with, random choice here, SEAT. Or Jaguar. Or Renault. Or Volvo (I'd love a Volvo prototype). I think some of the Toyota drivers would, but certainly some would not even be considered. There are many current prototype drivers who'd be in those seats if nationality was not considered. There are thousands of examples of someone beating someone else in a lower class or discipline that doesn't translate to the upper classes, otherwise I'm going to use that argument to say Paul Di Resta would be F1 champion. Taking single seater drivers, touring car drivers, and even drivers they dropped before, when there's a raft of sports car drivers and experience about is an odd choice. Well, not odd because it's exactly what you expect Toyota to do given history, but IMO it isn't the best choice.

DPi drivers should be considered for those drives. (Still trying desperately to keep this clinging to the original question).
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Old 14 May 2017, 23:10 (Ref:3733526)   #2593
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Guys like JEV and Sutil were tested by Toyota and lost out to the likes of Kunimoto. They even said he won his seat on speed. Why is it that only the Japanese guys are questioned but when they put in Conway a couple years ago, or Lopez this year it gets ignored? Look over at the Toyota thread and the talk is Lopez is being relegated to the third car. It's only logical Toyota look at their own drivers through their program, every manufacturer who has a feeding system does that. Porsche has guys that came up from their GT ranks and Toyota has guys that came up from their single seater and Super GT ranks. That Taylor's are with GM and one of them is doing the Vette at LM.
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Old 14 May 2017, 23:59 (Ref:3733531)   #2594
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Old 15 May 2017, 00:53 (Ref:3733537)   #2595
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And at least DPIs so far haven't been no where near as plagued with electronics issues that the ACO spec cars have been. DPIs do have the option to run their own ECUs and electronics, and that seems to be a move for the better on their part.
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