IRL: Donnie Beechler Pulls Double at Orlando

Donnie Beechler of Springfield, Ill. is the only driver currently planning to compete in both end of Saturday's Indy Racing League/USAC Coors Light Silver Bullet "doubleheader" at the Walt Disney World Speedway near Orlando, Fla. ...

Donnie Beechler of Springfield, Ill. is the only driver currently planning to compete in both end of Saturday's Indy Racing League/USAC Coors Light Silver Bullet "doubleheader" at the Walt Disney World Speedway near Orlando, Fla. As soon as the Delphi Indy 200 concludes he will unbuckle from his Cahill Auto Racing Dallara/Aurora and head for his Cadillac-powered Beast Silver Bullet machine, owned by Dr. Jim Logan, for an additional 50-mile chase around the 1-mile paved oval. The Delphi Indy 200 gets under way at noon and the 50-mile Silver Bullet race follows approximately 30 minutes after the IRL's checkered flag. Qualifications for both series are scheduled for Friday. No newcomer to either series, it will however mark the first time he's competed in a pavement Silver Bullet race since mid-1998 when he finished 15th at Indianapolis Raceway Park. Last year he only competed in two dirt-track Silver Bullet races and mechanical problems forced him out of both races before the halfway point. Donnie made his IRL debut in the 1998 Indianapolis 500 and competed in eight IRL events that year. He led the season-ending Las Vegas 500K. Last year he led the Longhorn 500 at Texas Motor Speedway before a late-race accident sent him to the sidelines. His best IRL start came in the 1999 Phoenix 200, a seventh, and his best finish came in the 1999 Kobalt Mechanics Tools 500 at Atlanta, where he was eighth. A veteran of USAC Silver Bullet racing since 1988, he finished in the runner-up point spot behind Dave Darland in the 1997 standings, winning the "Sumar Classic" at Terre Haute, Ind. for the second time. He also won at Sacramento, Calif. in 1995 and 1996 and in 1998 won A.J. Foyt's "Hulman Hoosier Hundred" in Indianapolis, Ind. Donnie also owns five career USAC National Midget Car feature wins, including the prestigious "Hut Hundred" in 1998 at Terre Haute, Ind. His last USAC win came in the next-to-last race at the 16th Street Speedway in a 40-lap MCI WorldCom National Midget Car race last September.

--USAC--

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About this article
Series IndyCar , USAC
Drivers Donnie Beechler , Dave Darland