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IHRA Champs in the News: Beard, Butler parade championship cars at big events

Monday, 21 January 2013
Since winning big at the IHRA Summit Racing Equipment Tournament of Champions back in October, many of the IHRA’s newly crowned World Champions have been busy promoting themselves and fitting snugly into their new roles as ambassadors for the sport.
From industry trade shows to sold-out monster truck arenas, IHRA’s new class of champions certainly haven’t been sitting idle this offseason. Just ask Super Stock World Champion Michael Beard and Top ET World Champion Tim Butler.
Three-time IHRA World Champion Michael Beard is certainly no stranger to the spotlight.
When he isn’t racing nearly every warm, dry weekend of the year, Beard is probably thinking about racing, or dreaming about racing or at the very least, preparing to think about racing.
But when Beard was asked to represent the IHRA by putting his car on display at the Hall of Champions at the International Motorsports Industry Show in Indianapolis this past December, even he was taken aback by the honor.
“The IMIS show at Indy was a great opportunity. My car was in the same row as Antron Brown and I got to congratulate him on his Top Fuel title,” Beard said. “By being there all week I met a lot of drivers and had plenty of time to peruse the entire show floor. I even had some important conversations with some of the great supporters in our industry.”
Butler, from nearby Sarasota, Florida, brought his Summit SuperSeries prize dragster to the Tampa Monster Jam to promote the Bradenton Nitro Jam taking place at Bradenton Motorsports Park the weekend of April 19-20. Butler’s dragster was featured during the Monster Jam Pit Party outside the stadium and later was rolled into the stadium and fired up during prerace festivities. Butler was even interviewed in front of the tens of thousands of race fans in attendance where he had an opportunity to talk about his big win, the upcoming Nitro Jam and the great people at Summit Racing Equipment.
“What a great show and tremendous exposure for the IHRA, the Nitro Jam at Bradenton Motorsports Park and, of course, all of the sponsors on the Summit dragster,” Butler said. “We were parked next to Grave Digger and the line for autographs literally wrapped around us. We talked to the fans, handed out hero cards and talked about the upcoming Nitro Jam at Bradenton which was really cool.
“Then we pushed the Summit dragster out into the infield of Raymond James Stadium for opening ceremonies. On command from the official we fired the motor and revved it several times. The crowd absolutely loved it.”
Last modified on Wednesday, 24 April 2013