A passion for motor-sports started early for Heartbeat owner, John Matthews. He was the kid who hung out at the motorcycle shop all weekend, asking questions and sitting on every bike he could fit on. At twelve, his father, an engineer and sports car fan, got him involved in kart racing. Starting with the first KT100 karts, John quickly moved up to an Invader with a Komet K55. The experience of building his own karts and motors with Gary and Jeff Nelson hooked John, and soon he was working in their shop, CalKart, in San Jose, CA on the weekends. During those years, John raced against the legendary Emmicks and drivers like Scott Pruett. The smell of castor oil and the sound of open class monsters heading off the grid was imprinted deeply.
After being out of racing for too long, John started crewing for an SCCA GT3 car in 1995. The passion soon came back, and he got his license and started racing again in the IT class. After moving to Arizona, John started TMS Racing, Inc. in 2003 to serve the needs of local kart racers. His drivers won multiple championships that first year, and John quickly gained a reputation as a tuner to be reckoned with. Desire to help build up the sport led him to start working on 4-cycle engines, and he soon found Mike Clements, a legendary engine builder, right in his own backyard. After two years of apprenticeship, John bought Heartbeat Racing Products, LLC. from Mike and Kim Clements and has been building winning race engines ever since. His engines have won numerous local championships as well as the prestigious IKF Duffy in World Formula.
Currently, John works full time operating Heartbeat Power Products, LLC. in Elk Rapids, MI. Heartbeat provides a full line of outdoor power equipment, ranging from lawnmowers to outboard motors. Kart racing remains a central part of the business, with open class engine building as a specialty. John and his team also provide a full selection of parts and services to customers from Canada to Mexico and all over the USA. They are one of the few shops that service all types of kart racers, from sprints to dirt oval and road racing, 2- and 4-cycle engine building, even the Time Machine and Cheyenne chassis lines; they deal with it all. Contact them today to take your racing program to the next level; you’ll be glad you did.