The Auto Channel
The Largest Independent Automotive Research Resource
The Largest Independent Automotive Research Resource
Official Website of the New Car Buyer

Tim Steele Withdraws from Atlanta ARCA and NASCAR Races

14 November 1997

HAMPTON, GA - 1997 ARCA Bondo/Mar-Hyde Series champion Tim Steele has 
withdrawn his entries from the season-ending ARCA Reese's 400K and the 
Winston Cup NAPA 500 at Atlanta Motor Speedway. 

Steele, who was testing a Bud Moore-owned Winston Cup Thunderbird at the 
speedway on November 5, crashed hard into the wall in turn four. He was 
unconscious for a brief period and had to be extricated from the car by 
safety workers before being transported to Southern Regional Medical Center 
in Jonesboro, GA. He underwent a CAT scan, which was negative, and was 
treated for a sprained left ankle. 

The 29-year old driver had planned to compete in the Winston West series 
event at Las Vegas Motor Speedway last weekend, but due to the amount of 
discomfort that Steele experienced when strapping into the car he opted to 
withdraw from the event. 

"We made two practice runs," explained Steele. "When I buckled up in the 
driver's seat, I knew I was hurt worse than I thought. I've been sore before, 
but never like that. Not only was my ankle bothering me, but my chest was so 
tight that it was difficult to breathe right."

Upon returning home to Michigan, Steele checked into a local hospital for 
further observation. Subsequent x-rays revealed four broken ribs and several 
thin fractures in his ankle. 

"I'm glad that I did that," said Steele. "As it turned out, they've deduced 
that the ankle is more or less crushed. But the biggest problem is the four 
broken ribs. One of them was very close to puncturing a lung. The doctors 
said that if I were to take another hard lick, I could be in big-time 
trouble. They would not clear me to race after analyzing the situation.

Steele clinched his third ARCA championship title with a victory in the Allen 
Crowe Memorial 100 at the Illinois State Fairgrounds on October 18. 

"Since we've already been fortunate enough to win the ARCA championship this 
year," Steele commented. "I think that it's in everybody's best interest if I 
just sit on the sidelines this weekend. It's going to be a difficult thing to 
do, because I was really looking forward to trying to make it six ARCA wins 
in-a-row on Saturday. I think we could have been really competitive in Bud's 
car on Sunday, too. I'm pretty restless having to be a spectator, but I've 
been around long enough to know that your health comes first. Rest assured 
though, we'll be back stronger than ever."

Lori Vizza -- The Auto Channel