Taylor took the Velocity Worldwide-sponsored Corvette DP to a 3.889-second victory over the No. 6 Michael Shank Racing Riley-Ford of Gustavo Yacaman in second, following a late restart with three minutes to go.
There was no denying the Wayne Taylor Racing duo, however, who picked up their fifth victory of the season, but more importantly the Daytona Prototype title.
“We knew we had a decent car but we didn’t know how good it was because it’s obviously hard to pass here,” Taylor said. “Max didn’t take any risks, which was good for the championship. When I got in, we had clear track.
“When we went to the restart that was the only time we had an idea how competitive we’d be compare to everybody else. When it went green I was able to gap them and maintain it. I was pretty happy out there.”
While Angelelli earned his second GRAND-AM championship, it was 22-year-old Taylor’s maiden title, coming in his first full season of DP competition. Jordan’s father, Wayne, shared the 2005 championship with Angelelli.
Title contenders Scott Pruett and Memo Rojas completed the podium in third after having to start from the rear of the 14-car DP field due to an engine change after qualifying.
Chip Ganassi Racing, however, walked away with the teams’ championship. Chevrolet and Riley won the engine and chassis manufacturer titles, respectively.
The pole-sitting No. 42 Team Sahlen Riley-BMW of Dane Cameron and Wayne Nonnamaker was fourth, with a late charge by Sebastien Bourdais giving 8Star Motorsports a top-five for its No. 4 Corvette DP.
A late pile-up triggered by contact from the No 90 Spirit of Daytona Corvette of Richard Westbrook collected the No. 99 GAINSCO/Bob Stallings Racing entry of Alex Gurney, resulting in a DNF for the Red Dragon.
Marsh Racing translated the pole into the final GT class victory, following a commanding performance by Eric Curran and super sub Lawson Aschenbach.
Curran edged out the No. 63 Scuderia Corsa Ferrari of Alessandro Balzan by 4 seconds to give the Teddy Marsh-led squad its first class victory of the year in the last race for its Corvette GT car.
“I had a decent start and kind of got botched up on the restart. I got the green flag a little bit late and John [Edwards] got by me but I was able to get back by him and take off,” said pole-sitter Aschenbach, who was a late fill-in for team regular Boris Said.
“Eric did a fantastic job. With all of the restarts and everything he had to go through, that’s a superb drive. That’s exactly what you want out of a teammate.”
Balzan, meanwhile, was crowned GT champion thanks to his runner-up finish with Leh Keen, while Scuderia Corsa’s sister No. 64 Ferrari of Johannes van Overbeek and Jeff Westphal completed the podium in third.
The No. 57 Stevenson Motorsports Camaro of Robin Liddell and John Edwards made a late rally to finish fourth, following a left-front puncture in the opening hour.
The final GRAND-AM race ended in disappointment for Porsche, with the championship-leading No. 44 Magnus Racing entry getting taken out in a second-lap accident and Patrick Long being forced to retire the No. 73 Park Place Motorsports 911 GT3 Cup car with less than 20 minutes to go after being hit from behind by Westbrook.
GX race honors went to the No. 70 SpeedSource Mazda6 pairing of Sylvain Tremblay and Tom Long, who took a two-lap victory over the class championship-winning No. 38 BGB Motorsports Porsche Cayman of Dr. Jim Norman and Spencer Pumpelly.
It was Mazda’s 9th consecutive class victory in the final outing for the clean diesel-powered car and the GX category.GRAND-AM, Jordan Taylor, Lime Rock, Max Angelelli, Sports Cars, Wayne Taylor Racing