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Nathan Byrd. (Byrd Racing photo)

Nathan Byrd To Take On Triple Duty At Open Wheel Showdown

LAS VEGAS, Nev. — Nathan Byrd will take on the inaugural Riskon360! Open Wheel Showdown with a triple-duty campaign, racing in the $50,000-to-win winged asphalt sprint car, $10,000-to-win midget and $5,000-to-win super modified divisions at the Bullring at Las Vegas Motor Speedway.

The Arizona native will be making his winged asphalt sprint car and super modified debuts during the Dec. 1-2 event.

Byrd is a fourth-generation racer, but the first in his family to pursue a professional driving career. His great grandmother started the Byrd Racing tradition of owning, preparing and sponsoring race cars.

Byrd Racing is most well-known for its exploits at the Indianapolis 500. Byrd joins Davey Hamilton, Jr. and Sr. along with Arie Luyendyk, Jr. among entrants with ties to the Greatest Spectacle in Racing. The strong entry list and record-breaking purse have the Open Wheel Showdown set to be one of the biggest events in pavement open-wheel racing in many years.

“I’m blessed to have the opportunity to be a part of a racing family and brand that has its roots in Indy,” Byrd said. “It’s cool because I’m technically the first Byrd racer that’s raced at a professional level. It’s really awesome that (Davey Hamilton, Jr.) has been able to make this happen. It’s going to be the biggest winged sprint car show ever and a really special event. I’m grateful to be a part of it.”

Byrd has had one of the most varied racing careers in North America over the last two or three years, racing road courses and short tracks in both open wheel and closed wheel machines.

At the Open Wheel Showdown, he will test his adaptability in a sprint car fielded by Jimmy Waters, a super modified owned by Jim Birges and a pavement midget for the juggernaut Bertrand Motorsports.

“That’s been my whole training method, jumping back and forth with different cars,” Byrd said. “Working up the limits in a safe and proper manner. It usually takes me a few laps to adjust to the next car. (At the Open Wheel Showdown) there’s not going to be that much time to do that. I’m going to have to be on it really hard from the get-go.”

The young racer has set realistic expectations for himself, knowing the quality of equipment he will have underneath him against over 100 of the top open-wheel drivers in the world.

“It’s going to be very interesting to see how I stack up among the sprints and super modifieds since I’m going in as a newbie and relying on my adaptability,” Byrd said. “I think all the cars I’m driving are going to be very competitive and as long as I do my work as a driver, I definitely hope to be in the conversation and show I deserve to be there.”

Watch the event live on