CORONA, CA (March 28, 2019) - After earning his long-sought first Lucas Oil Off Road Racing Series Pro Lite championship, Ryan Beat has plans to attack the Pro 2 division a year from now. But first, he wants one more Pro Lite crown.
“We have the right sponsors on board. They all want the same thing I want, which is to be in Pro 2,” Beat said recently. “So for me, it’s about going out and feeling good about everything in Pro Lite and, in 2020, move on.”
Beat will begin his pursuit of a repeat. Next stop Chandler, Arizona on April 13th, for the Super Clean Duel in the Desert Presented By Rockstar Energy.
No matter what happens in 2019, it’s like a boulder was lifted off Beat’s shoulders when he broke through and won a Pro Lite championship. The 32-year-old from El Cajon, California had four wins and finished 31 points clear of Brandon Arthur atop the points chase.
Since breaking into Pro Lite in 2012, Beat had finishes of second, third and fifth in the points.
He leaves no doubt about what the title meant.
“Winning that championship was everything to me,” Beat said. “ It was everything that we’ve worked for. Since the first day of us starting in Off Road, that was the goal, to win a championship.”
“Obviously, I’d like to move on to Pro 2 or Pro 4 the next couple of years. To be able to do that, I felt that I owed it not only to myself and my team but proving it not to anybody else, but to myself that I’m a champion, I can do it. We had been so close for so many years, it was nice to finally win one so that I could eventually move on … and know that I’ve accomplished all I need to in Pro Lite.”
“I’ve won at every track essentially there is in Pro Lite. For me it was just checking that box and being able to move on.”
Making it even more special for the former Motocross racer was doing it on his own terms, overseeing his own team and being responsible for all the decisions.
“Essentially, I’m at the helm of ship and whatever the ship does is because of me,” Beat said. “For us to be as successful as we have the last couple of years in Pro Lite is a good thing. It means I’m doing things right. I’ve learned by trial and error. It’s accomplishing to be able to say that we’ve won all that we’ve won. I’m proud of my team and everything that we’ve put together.”
“We’ve only been in this six years. To accomplish what we have in that short a time, not having any background in auto racing as far as Off Road goes … I came from motocross … it’s a testament to my guys and the team we’ve assembled.”
Beat formed his own team in 2015, four years after his dirt bike career came to an end after suffering an injury while testing. After nine months of intense physical rehabilitation, Beat found a quick fit in the Lucas Oil Off Road Racing Series, finishing second in Pro Lite for the Hart and Huntington short-course team.
“The biggest thing I love about Off Road is competition wise, it’s so similar to motocross,” Beat said. “It’s door-to-door, bar-to-bar action. You have jumping, cornering. It’s not just turning left, it’s turning left and right and throwing jumps in there. It’s essentially motocross with a truck.
“For me, I was right at home. Reading lines, timing of the jumps. The basics and fundamental you learn from motocross transitions right into the trucks.”
He feels even more at home with the team he leads, which include his dad, Dennis Beat, as crew chief and Tyler Lin as truck chief. Sponsors include Bilstein, General Tire, Lucas Oil, KMC Wheels, Competitive Metals, Chicago Pneumatic.
“Those are our key sponsors that make this program go round,” Beat said.
Beat had a test session planned prior to the season opener in San Bernardino, but said he expected it to be routine. He sounds ready for battle.
“Everything is right on track,” he said. “The trucks are ready. I felt we had a pretty solid package last year with winning the championship, so there’s no reason to go and re-invent the wheel. Maybe just fine tune what we have. We’re prepared and made the changes that we felt were necessary to keep us on top.”