Competing on a different continent, on an unfamiliar race track, with a new much faster machinery, Daryl DeLeon Taylor has done what was thought to be impossible. The Filipino-British driver flew to the first-ever Radical Cup World Finals in Las Vegas last November to cap off a mega 2022 season as World Champion.
The 17-year-old was part of a massive 36-car grid that consisted of the quickest Radical Motorsport drivers in the world. Daryl in particular was driving in the Platinum Class where the big boys run 425 hp Radical SR10s at the sharp end of the field.
Coming straight from the UK, he practically only had a day’s worth of running to get himself accustomed to the 5.20 km Charleston Peak circuit and his #2 grey-and-green liveried Radical SR10. And yet, despite having to learn 18 new corners and coping with massive jump in power, he was already quickest in Official Practice.
“It was an incredible feeling I had to adapt to the different feel and power modes of the SR10 and I was amazing by the acceleration of the flagship Radical. The circuit was another thing to be amazed by with all different types of corners, elevation changes and a lot of blind sectors,” he commented before heading into Qualifying.
Daryl was again the fastest driver on track for most of the 20-minute session on Friday setting a low 2:04.759 lap, that was until he was pipped by American driver Indy Al Miller by 0.064 secs in the closing stages. Still, it was enough to put him on the front row for all the Heats that weekend.
The first Heat started with a lengthy Safety Car period due to a first corner pile up. But once the action resumed, he immediately hunted down Miller in 1st place. His last ditch lunge on the last corner of the very last lap, however, proved to be unsuccessful and had to settle for 2nd.
He would get another shot during Heat 2 on Saturday morning. He again found himself stuck behind Miller for over half the race distance and couldn’t find a way past. But with only minutes to go, Miller suddenly lost power and dropped back, handing the lead and 1st place to Daryl.
Out to prove that his win wasn’t simply a fluke, Daryl got his head down in Heat 3. A good pit stop strategy allowed him to rejoin ahead of Miller where he then set a string of fast, consistent laps to open a 7.450 secs gap by the time the chequered flag came out.
With his pair of wins, Daryl would start the all-important World Final on Sunday from pole position. Though his lead only lasted until the first turn, he managed to regain 1st place a few corners later after a making a brave pass on Miller. By now the newly crowned Radical SR1 Cup UK Champion already had the world championship trophy in his sights. But the 35 cars behind him was the least of his worries. Strong gusts of wind made it difficult to stay on track and caught out several drivers including Miller. The 40-minute race was also plagued by 2 lengthy Safety Car periods, turning the last 2 laps into a sprint to the finish. Daryl thankfully survived all this to take 1st place and be crowned the Radical World Finals World Champion.
Daryl DeLeon Taylor: “It was a privilege to be given the opportunity to travel to Las Vegas and compete in the first-ever Radical World Finals. Driving the SR10 around the new Charleston Peak circuit in Spring Mountain was a crazy feeling, but to come away as World Champion is even crazier. I would like to thank everyone for this opportunity I’ve been given. I am forever grateful and I would like to thank everyone at Valour Racing for the unreal support. I wouldn’t of been able to achieve this without them.”
Daryl DeLeon Taylor is supported by Train Maintenance Services (TMS).
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