The St. Petersburg Pirelli World Challenge weekend marked the start of a new era for Taggart Autosport, with the North American debut of the Porsche 911 GT3 R package. Driver and team owner Jim Taggart was in the No. 7 GT-A class Porsche package for the season-opening double-header weekend on Florida street circuit.
After upgrading from a GTS Lotus Exige, which took Taggart to rookie of the year honors in 2013, the Porsche marked a big upgrade – a new class, more power and new manufacturer partner, all coupled with limited testing before the season opening round.
Opening practice saw Taggart in fourth place in his class – and as the skies opened up, wet tires were mounted and rain setups dialed in before dangerous standing water situations forced the cancellation of the first race of the weekend.
With no less than six Porsche engineers on site to support a number of entries in the World Challenge field, Taggart Autosport was in good hands as the Porsche crew provided electronic updates, data and parts support to the North Carolina-based team throughout the weekend.
After an exciting standing start on Sunday, Taggart was solidly making his way through the Pirelli World Challenge 51-car pack before contact ended his day in turn four.
“It was looking like a great weekend, we kept going faster in each session,” noted Taggart. “It’s too bad it ended the way it did, with contact, but we’re trying hard to get the car ready for Barber. The decision to skip Long Beach was made a month ago in favor of further testing and development. The Porsche support at St. Pete was nothing short of amazing.”
Next up for Taggart Autosport is a trip to Barber Motorsports Park, April 25-27, for rounds four and five of the World Challenge season.
About: Taggart Autosport competes in the 2014 Pirelli World Challenge Championships with a GT-A Porsche 911 GT3 R, driven by Jim Taggart. In addition, Taggart races in the SCCA and completed the 2014 Rolex 24 at Daytona in a Porsche. Jim is a successful pharmaceutical entrepreneur turned race car driver, earning the National SCCA Rookie of the Year award in 2012 and Pirelli World Challenge GTS Rookie of the Year in 2013. The team is supported by Porsche, Virginia International Raceway, SmartCharms.com, The Jumbo Company, Local Motors and Corbeau Seats.
Social Media: Fans can keep up with the Porsche team on www.taggartautosport.com, on Twitter atwww.twitter.com/taggartauto, on Facebook atwww.facebook.com/TaggartAutosport and onboard footage is posted regularly towww.youtube.com/taggartautosport.
Source: Taggart Autosport