Zach Beard earns TA/D license

DPM DEVELOPMENT DRIVER ZACH BEARD EARNS NHRA TA/D LICENSE BROWNSBURG, Ind. (March 19, 2008) -- After a successful two-year stretch as one of the top go-kart racers in the nation, David Powers Motorsports development driver Zach Beard is now ...

DPM DEVELOPMENT DRIVER ZACH BEARD EARNS NHRA TA/D LICENSE

BROWNSBURG, Ind. (March 19, 2008) -- After a successful two-year stretch as one of the top go-kart racers in the nation, David Powers Motorsports development driver Zach Beard is now shifting his driving focus towards the quarter mile. The 17-year-old Beard earned his NHRA competition license after wheeling Randy Meyer's A/FD to a pass of 5.48 seconds at 252 mph on March 17 at Gainesville (Fla.) Raceway.

Beard began racing go-karts in 2005 winning the SIRA Super Can championship in his first season on tour. He won on the Florida Winter Tour in 2007 and has finished in the top five the past two seasons in the Stars of Karting presented by IRL series. Beard also has raced Formula BMWs in Spain. He currently is a junior at Covenant Christian High School in Indianapolis.

"I want to thank David Powers for giving me the opportunity to be his development driver for David Powers Motorsports," Beard said. "After making my first full run in Randy Meyer's dragster, it was exciting to be able to turn to my dad and say 'even though you drove dragsters and Funny Cars, my first full run was quicker and faster than you ever went.' Racing go-karts on a national level is very challenging and I've had the opportunity to compete against Scott Dixon, Dan Wheldon, Tomas Scheckter and Buddy Rice. Now, I can only hope to one day stage next to the Schumacher's, Dixon's and Bernstein's."

Beard made six laps on Monday at the historic Florida drag strip, two in a Super Comp dragster and four in Randy Meyer's dragster, which Diana Harker competed in during the 39th annual Gatornationals.

Beard's father, Lee, has been synonymous with NHRA drag racing for more than three decades. The Colorado native, who currently serves as crew chief on Antron Brown's Matco Tools dragster, has collected 50 NHRA victories, including four wins at the prestigious U.S. Nationals. Beard, 54, also has earned 56 poles with eight different drivers in the Top Fuel and Funny Car categories, including tuning Brown to the No. 1 qualifying position at the season-opening Winternationals in his first career Top Fuel race this February.

David Powers Motorsports is one of the first professional NHRA race teams to activate a program to cultivate young driving talent and affiliate them with mainstream corporate partners.

-credit: dpm

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About this article
Series NHRA
Drivers Tomas Scheckter , Antron Brown , Dan Wheldon , Buddy Rice , Randy Meyer , David Powers