Taylor Hagler Ready for IMSA Championship Defenseadmin
The 2021 IMSA Michelin Pilot Challenge TCR Champion Taylor Hagler launched her 2022 campaign with three days of testing at Daytona International Speedway this weekend for the Roar Before the 24.
The Hyundai driver shares the No. 1 Bryan Herta Autosport Hyundai Elantra N TCR with her teammate and fellow 2021 IMSA champion Michael Lewis. In preparation for the three-hour endurance challenge, Tyler Maxson joined the driver lineup for the test weekend.
Making the transition to the Elantra platform from the Veloster N TCR that she won the title with, Hagler progressed in speed each session and set her fastest lap of the weekend of 2:00.778-minutes in the fifth and final session on Sunday. It was a productive three days, with the trio clocking 93 laps in the No. 1 Hyundai as they gained familiarity with the Elantra.
“The Hyundai Elantra N TCR is a great car and will be a front runner this season,” said Hagler. “It is a super stable car so I can be more aggressive with my mid-corner speeds and the car gave me a lot of confidence. I’m really impressed with the car and just eager to keep getting more laps in it so this week should be awesome.”
Hagler made history in 2021 becoming the first female IMSA Michelin Pilot TCR Champion after a momentous season that featured a breakthrough win at Lime Rock Park as well as four podium finishes (Sebring International Raceway, WeatherTech Raceway Laguna Seca, Watkins Glen International, and Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course). Hagler is determined to continue those results as the 2022 season begins.
“Last season was a storybook year for me and the best so far of my career,” said Hagler, who only started racing in 2019. “We are starting with a blank slate this season with a new car but that doesn’t damper our determination to be back on top. Michael (Lewis) and I have a great working relationship. We know what we need to do and how to communicate with each other to get the best results possible.”
The four-hour Endurance Challenge kicks off the 2022 IMSA Michelin Pilot Challenge season on Friday, January 28th at 1:30pm ET. Live coverage of all four-hours of racing will be available on Peacock.