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Old 06-14-2017, 09:29 PM
9,433 posts, read 7,115,858 times
Reputation: 12203


I got to thinking about Tim earlier today for some strange reason, and since I haven't done one of these for a while..

Tim Steele is a name that many newer fans have never heard of.. You should have. Tim's story is something of a tragic one, because he never really got to test his potential at the highest levels of auto racing.

He ran 5 Cup races in 1994 in poor rides (Bobby Allison).. 10 Xfinity series races between 93 and 97, scoring 2 top 10's and 13 truck races in 1999 scoring a single pole and top 10 finish. Nothing exciting.

But ARCA is where Tim made his name. I remember watching him in the early 90's and he was just a beast in ARCA. 3 time champion in 93, 96 and 97.. He was the Jeff Gordon of ARCA and it was just a matter of time before he made the jump to Cup.. And it looked like he could have really had the talent to make it there.

Unfortunately, in late 1997, he was in a violent crash at Atlanta that left him with a brain injury. Effectively, his career ended that day. He continued to race sporadically until 2007 when another crash (Much like with Ernie Irvan) convinced him that he needed to find a new line of work.

His ARCA stats are just astounding. In 146 career races, he had 41 wins. a 28% winning rate. 86 top 5's and 101 top 10's. And he wasn't just a great wheelman.. He did the setup on his cars.. He knew what he was doing from the engineering side as well.

The really sad part is.. He was primed to go to Cup in 1998. Story is he was 10 days from signing on to drive for Bud Moore with Nike and Sony as sponsors when he had his crash.

He was just never the same after that. One of the many "What could have been" stories from racing.

He always reminded me, from a driving standpoint of another Tim.. Tim Richmond. Just pure, raw talent.
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