POWRi - 600cc Micros Leader Beckinger Prime Contender In Illinois
Evansville, June 15, 2011: Trent Beckinger has developed into a championship contender in his second season in the POWRi Speedway Motors 600cc Outlaw Micro Series. The 20-year-old from Evansville, Ind., has two victories and leads the points going into this week’s three-event Building Systems of Illinois Mini Sprint Nationals at Lincoln Speedway on Thursday (June 16) and Macon Speedway on Friday (June 17) and Saturday (June 18).
Beckinger took a 920-900 lead over three-time POWRi Micros champion Dereck King with his win at Springfield (Mo.) Raceway last Saturday. He’s raced in six of the seven events this season and has five top-four finishes and a sixth. They are performances that make him a prime contender in the Mini Sprint Nationals, which conclude Saturday with a 33-car field in the feature racing for a $2,000 first-place prize and a prestigious race win to put on his resume.
“We’re really looking forward to Mini Sprint Nationals knowing we’re running so well,” Beckinger said. “We ran a really good race at Springfield. There’s no doubt we’re running well.”
Beckinger finished second in the grand finale of the Mini Sprint Nationals a year ago to Heath Hanley of Manheim, Pa. He was sixth in the Friday feature, which locked him into the feature for Saturday. The event has the same top-six format this weekend, with starting positions decided by draw.
“We almost won the big prize last year,” Beckinger said. “It was a really, really exciting race. It would be great to win it.”
Beckinger has been racing Micro Sprints since 2006 and finished 10th in the POWRi championship a year ago with a victory at Haubstadt., Ind. He decided to switch chassis with five races left in 2010, purchasing a Sawyer from John Mackling, the owner of Jeremy Camp’s team. Camp won the POWRi title last season.
“This season is definitely our best by far in Micro Sprints,” Beckinger said. “We’ve got some great equipment with the new Sawyer chassis and this is our first season with an OSR Kawasaki motor. The car kind of made me get better. Now that we’re running up front, we’re running with better drivers and I’m learning a lot running against guys like Dereck King and Andrew Felker. I’m improving a lot running against those guys.
“We saw those cars performing well and we had the opportunity to get one when we found out Camp’s team owner had one for sale. We went for it and it’s really paid off. In the wing class, there’s a big difference. With the Sawyer, it’s a lot easier to hit the right setup. Even when we do miss, it’s still a top-10 car. We’ve missed the setup a few times, yet our worst finish still a sixth.”
Beckinger’s family-owned team also made a switch to an OSR-built Kawasaki motor.
“It’s our first year with OSR and it’s definitely been awesome,” Beckinger said. “It’s one of best motors we’ve had for sure. There’s not a whole lot they get in there and do, but a lot of little things will make a couple extra horsepower. Sometimes horsepower shows and sometimes it doesn’t, but it’s good to have.”
Beckinger will make a determined effort to win the POWRi championship this year.
“We ran quite a bit last year,” he said. “The only shows missed were in middle of the week. This year we’re definitely shooting for the whole season. I think it will come down to me, Dereck King, Joe B. Miller, Andrew Felker and maybe somebody else. It’s nice to be up next to those guys who been running Micros so well for so long.”
POWRi Speedway Motors 600cc Outlaw Micro Series top-10 points standings (after seven of 27 events): 1. Trent Beckinger 920, 2. Dereck King 900, 3. Joe B. Miller 880, 4. J.B. Gilbert 710, 5. Jordan Campbell 690, 6. Andrew Felker 660, 7. Jacob Patton 625, 8. Ryan Guyett 525, 9. Paul Nienhiser 495, 10. Aaron Andruskevitch 450.
POWRi Speedway Motors 600cc Outlaw Micro Series 2011 race winners: Du Quoin, Ill.--Ryan Langston; Belleville, Ill.--Aaron Andruskevitch; Wayne County, Ill.--Dereck King; Brownstown, Ill.--Trent Beckinger; Peoria, Ill.-Andrew Felker; West Plains, Mo.--Triston Tidmore; Springfield, Mo.--Trent Beckinger.
For more information on POWRi Racing, go to www.POWRi.com.