BEARD CONTINUES TO IMPRESS ON STARS OF KARTING CIRCUIT, LEADS STARS OF KARTING NATIONAL STANDINGS TOOELE, Utah. (July 12, 2007) -- When racing is your trade and your surname happens to be Beard, competing at a high level is habit....
BEARD CONTINUES TO IMPRESS ON STARS OF KARTING CIRCUIT, LEADS STARS OF KARTING NATIONAL STANDINGS
TOOELE, Utah. (July 12, 2007) -- When racing is your trade and your surname happens to be Beard, competing at a high level is habit. For 16-year-old Zach Beard, racing his First Kart near the front of the pack in the Stars of Karting SpecRacer division has become commonplace. Last weekend at Miller Motorsports Park, the second generation racer earned the pole on Saturday and a podium spot on Sunday afternoon.
Competing for the first time since May, the Avon, Ind. resident and VDI (Vintage Design Inc.) Development Driver impressed at the Stars of Karting presented by IRL's Western Division Round Two competition in Utah. Racing at the Utah facility for the first time, Beard raced his First Kart to the pole on Saturday, July 7 with a quick lap of 58.176. He led three laps before his battery pack came loose and still managed an impressive fourth-place finish in the SpecRacer class. Beard and crew chief Shawn Regula assembled a new kart on Friday and missed a good portion of the practice sessions.
"I was happy to salvage a fourth-place finish after holding the battery with one hand and steering with the other on Saturday," Beard said. "That took away my ability to fine-tune the carburetor. My crew chief, Shawn (Regula), did a great job assembling a new cart and putting me in position to earn the pole."
A day later, Beard started from the outside of row one and held his position to a second-place finish and a podium spot. He missed earning a second consecutive pole position by just .003 of-a-second to top qualifier Bonnier Moulton. Beard took the lead on the opening lap and led nine laps during the July 8 event before his kart got loose. He also earned a place on the podium on May 19 at the Stars of Karting event in New Castle, Ind.
"I felt I had the ability to win, but in the late stages of the race my kart started to get a little loose, so I had to come home in second place," Beard said.
Beard's solid effort at Miller Motorsports Park vaulted him to the top of the Stars of Karting national standings. He currently ranks third in the Eastern division after two of four events, and leads the Western division following last weekend's event in Utah. He will next compete at Shawano, Wis., Aug. 3-5, in round three of the Stars of Karting East Division.
In his first season driving for Toronto-based First Kart North America, the Covenant Christian High School student stood atop the podium after winning at Homestead (Fla.) Karting Facility on the Florida Winter Tour. The event featured the best young racers from the United States, Canada, Puerto Rico, Mexico and South America. First Kart recently opened a satellite shop in Brownsburg, Ind. where Beard works part-time.
His father, Lee Beard, 53, is one of the most accomplished crew chiefs in NHRA drag racing history. Having led Gary Ormsby to the 1989 NHRA Top Fuel crown, Beard also has tuned the likes of Ed McCulloch, Kenny Bernstein, Cory McClenathan, Whit Bazemore and Rod Fuller to victory. The Colorado native has called the shots for winners in both the Top Fuel and Funny Car divisions. He now serves as Team Manager/Crew Chief for Pittsboro, Ind.-based David Powers Motorsports.