Brendan Gaughan preps for farewell year in NASCAR Cup

Photo by Zach Catanzareti/Kickin' The Tires

By: Zach Catanzareti, Staff Writer

Brendan Gaughan, above all else, has one goal for the 2020 NASCAR Cup Series season: Keep it fun.

That’s been the mantra of the entire four-year run between driver Gaughan and the Beard Motorsports team, who first matched in February of 2017 at Daytona International Speedway.

Now, three seasons of part-time superspeedway racing later, it is 44-year-old Gaughan who’s making the decision to call it the end. Not only between him and the small family organization, but to NASCAR’s top series, as the veteran will make his final Cup starts in 2020.

“I love racing, and competing with Beard Motorsports these last few years have made for some of my most enjoyable moments in NASCAR,” said Gaughan. “We do a lot with a little, so when we run up front and lead laps, it’s very satisfying because you know all the work that went into it.”

Gaughan’s final starts will come on the only tracks the team has ever competed on: Daytona in both February and August, and Talladega in April and October.

With 12 starts for Beard, Gaughan has scored two top-10 finishes, a best of seventh at Daytona in 2017 and most recently an eighth at Talladega last May. The No. 62 Chevrolet was leading the field last fall at ‘Dega when he was turned by a spinning car and sent flipping through the air before landing on his wheels. He left the car uninjured and happy as ever.

“I wouldn’t want my last races as a NASCAR driver to be with any other team,” he said of 2020. “Mark Beard Sr., and his entire family are passionate about racing, and NASCAR in particular. We’re all competitive and want to perform, but we’re going to have fun doing it.

“That’s how we all got started in the sport – because it was fun. And as I wrap up my career, I’m going to make sure it stays fun.”

For Beard, he knew what he was getting into when he signed the blunt and bold Las Vegas native, who brought hundreds of national NASCAR starts to the table back in 2017.

“Brendan brings a lot of experience to our race team and that has allowed us to be competitive despite not having all the resources of the bigger teams that compete week in and week out,” Beard said. “We have a lot of respect for what those teams do, and it’s an honor to be able to park in the NASCAR Cup Series garage, unload our racecar and see where we stack up. We take a lot of pride in the effort we put forth, and the effort our partners put into Beard Motorsports.

The team will once again be supplied with ECR motors, which Gaughan has attributed to his consistent pace against a competitive field.

“Richard Childress and the staff at RCR provide us with top-notch equipment,” Beard said. “We’ve worked with them since 2017 and it’s easy to understand why they’ve been in the sport for 50 years.

“We’re proud to continue our technical partnership with RCR and we look forward to making Brendan’s last races as a NASCAR driver memorable.”

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