Previously, Gardner tested the Green Monster land speed car at Bonneville for four years, becoming the youngest driver ever to top 500 mph in 1988 at the age of 16. He drove off-road vehicles in the High Desert Racing Association from 1991-93, and was eighth in points and the rookie of the year in the American Indycar Series in 1993. After a second year in the series, he tested for the Project Indy team, which was competing in the IndyCar World Series.
Gardner intended to debut in the new Indy Racing League at the 1996 Dura Lube 200, at Phoenix International Raceway. Despite failing to pass his rookie test in the "Test at the West" because of an engine failure, Gardner was entered at the last minute with Tempero/Giuffre Racing. However, further mechanical issues in practice left him unable to pass his test and compete. At the Indianapolis 500, he competed for Team Scandia, qualifying 25th on the second day of qualifiers. He retired after 76 laps with a suspension failure, being credited with a 25th place finish.
He retired from racing in the late 90's and is now a stunt driver for television and motion pictures.
Indy 500 results
- "With The Name 'Racin,' He's in the Right Business". Associated Press. May 22, 1996. Retrieved January 10, 2019.
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