Inducted into the Michigan Motor Sports Hall of Fame in 2009.
Born in Coopersville, MI in 1968, Tim is the son of
Harold and Marcia Steele. Tim was introduced to motorsports at a very
early age by his grandfather and father by working on race cars,
competing with go-karts, mini-champs, and motorcycles. If there was ever
a natural born racer, it may be said that Tim Steele fits into that
Tim entered the 0-14 age bracket for motorcycle ice racing at age 5. In
1981, at the age of 13, Tim finished 2nd in the AMA/125cc class Michigan
State motocross championships. In 1984 at age 16, Tim participated in
International Jet Ski Racing events. Also that year, he won the NAMRA
Champ Cars division championship and was named as the Rookie of the
Tim soon found that he was the most comfortable behind the wheel of a
stock car. He began racing a late model and recalls his most memorable
win came in 1989 at his home track, Berlin Raceway. Tim began broadening
his participation to include other racing series and soon found success
with victories in ASA at Salem in 1990, and in the NASCAR All-Pro Series
at Winchester in 1992. 1992 would also see Tim get his start in the ARCA
Racing Series at Texas World Speedway. With his father Harold as car
owner and sponsor, the familiar red H&S Die and Engineering #16 from
that day forward, has compiled an impressive list of accomplishments;
many of which stand unparalleled to this day.
In 1993, Tim would earn the ARCA Rookie of the Year title, and also
capture his first championship title. Tim would go on to win the ARCA
Series Championship again in 1996 and 1997. He holds the ARCA record of
all-time series super speedway winner with a total of 24 victories at
Atlanta, Kentucky, Loweís, MIS, Pocono, and Talladega. Among those wins
were 9 victories at Pocono, which still tops the charts. Timís most
memorable victory in ARCA came in 1996 with his first home state win at
MIS. He also had victories at Berlin, Winchester, Salem, Kil-Kare, Flat
Rock, Pikes Peak, Shady Bowl, and Springfield for 41 total wins in 145
career starts. His 12 wins in 1997 were the most in a single season
since 1973. He is tied in all-time ARCA series super speedway poles with
18, and is 2nd on the all-time super speedway lap leader list with 2,316
laps-led inn 50 super speedway races. His ARCA career would also include
86 top-5 finishes, 101 top-10, and 31 career pole awards.
Other notable series competition came in the years 1993, Ď94, and Ď97
with 10 starts in the NASCAR Busch Grand National Series, 5 starts in
1994 inn the Winston Cup Series, and 13 starts in 1999 in the Craftsman
Not all of Timís career was without misfortune. In 1997, just days away
from from signing a contract with Robert Yates to race full time in
NASCARís Winston Cup Series, Tim was seriously injured in a crash at
Atlanta Motor Speedway. Timís father Harold and Brett Favre were in the
process of purchasing Bud Mooreís team and were planning to run for the
1998 NASCAR Rookie-of-the-Year at the time of the crash. Unfortunately,
there would be ongoing, residual and personal issues that would plague
Tim during the comeback phase of his career. Despite these ongoing
struggles, Tim still managed to post 11 of his 41 career victories after
the Ď97 accident.
Timís final ARCA race came in 2006 at Chicago. One year later in the
spring of 2007, Tim crashed hard while testing his late model at Toledo.
It was at that moment that Tim Steele realized that it was time for him
to retire from driving a race car.
Tim resides in Coopersville with his wife Dawn, and daughters Kelsey and
Taylor. You can still find Tim at various tracks throughout the country
wrenching on cars...not as a driver, but rather as a team owner.
Send mail to
Allan E. Brown with questions or comments about this web site.
Copyright - 2009 Michigan Motor Sports Hall of Fame