Keith Steele Brings Monster First Off-Road Championship in 2008!
Madison, WI (September 2, 2008) - The Monster Energy Super Truck of Keith Steele set up shop at Crandon International Raceway with their eye on the prize, the WSORR SRT Super Truck championship. All the team needed was a solid finish in Round XI and the championship would be theirs. To no surprise, Keith Steele, took to the track with same intensity he always has, and brought home the championship to Madison, Wisconsin.
The Labor Day Weekend Classic changed the format for the Super Truck competitors, as Round XI would be Friday night under the lights, on the .7 mile short-short track. Then Saturday's Round XII, the World Championship Round, would be contested on the 1.25 mile short track.
Even before the WSORR rounds were underway, all the divisions competing in the BorgWarner Heavy Metal Shootout had to qualify for their starting positions. Keith Steele qualified as the fastest Super Truck in the field, with a lap time of 1:28.91, ensuring a place in the lead pack of two-wheel drive trucks.
The shortened land rush start had several trucks get tangled up just in front of the main grandstands. Ron Schreiner grabbed the lead, with Ben Wandahsega and Keith Steele just behind as they took evasive action to avoid the mayhem. By lap two, the Monster Energy Chevy made the move into second, with the sights set on Schreiner. On lap five, the Goodyear tires put the power to the ground, as Keith grabbed the lead. The rest of the sixteen lap race, the Monster Energy Super Truck was never challenged, winning the round, and clinching the SRT Super Truck Championship.
"Tonight we achieved our main goal this year," commented Keith Steele. "We are taking the championship crown home to Madison. A ton of hard work went into this season. My family, my crew, everyone involved with our team, put in 110%. I can't forget to thank Monster Energy, Goodyear Tire, Wolverine Performance, J & H Transmission, Autoforms Body Panels, King Shocks, the World Series of Off-Road Racing, the Forest County Potawatomi community, Lucas Oil, and everyone that helps us get to the track, and all those that support our racing, giving us a place to race."
The final round of racing for the 2008 season had the Super Truck drivers competing on the Crandon's one mile short track.
The start saw the #229 Monster Energy Chevy come out Potawatomi Turn One in second place. By lap two, Keith moved into the lead, taking his second win of the year, a giving Steele Off-Road a World Championship Ring.
"Our main goal was to win the championship, but winning a World Championship ring was a close second," remarked Keith Steele. "This year I've been living the dream. Thanks to Monster, our entire team is always energized and ready to go to work when our race truck comes off the track. Our Goodyear tires performed all year long without a flat. The King shocks really kept this truck on the ground so we could use all that Wolverine power, and of course, our J & H transmission always gets the power to the Goodyear tires.
Keith Steele is the 2008 World Series of Off-Road Racing SRT Super Truck Champion.
The weekend of racing wasn't over for the black and green Chevy. Keith, looking to get more track time, entered Saturday's PRO-2WD race. The team was looking to learn more about its race truck when compared to the higher horsepower PRO division. In 2009, the Monster Energy Goodyear Tire will be moving up to PRO-2WD.
The race was uneventful for Keith Steele as the ring and pinion broke, midway through the race, ending the team's day. Officially Keith Steele finished in eleventh place.
After replacing the "pumpkin" in the rear axle, Keith went out for the final round of racing for the PRO-2WD season. The race saw several other Super Truck drivers in this race, as well.
Keith Steele got caught up in another racer's problem. A fellow Super Truck driver, #229 Gordon Zima, has lost his brakes and piled into the back of the Monster Energy Chevy. Fortunately, the rear cage, severely bent, did its job, and protected any major components from damage. Keith continued on, and finished eighth in the eighteen truck field.
After a long and successful season, Keith Steele and his team made the decision to forego the BorgWarner Heavy Metal Shootout. Congratulations to the winner, Scott Taylor as he took the win in his two-wheel drive truck, for the second time in his stellar career.
The 2008 season saw Keith Steele take his #229 Monster Energy J & H Transmission Goodyear Tire Chevrolet Silverado to the podium, eleven times out of twelve, including eight wins, one runner up finish, and two third place finishes.
Keith also entered the PRO-2WD division with same truck, four times. His best finish was a third in Round 8 at Oshkosh.
A special thanks goes to Eric Ruppel. When the team didn't have enough time to repair the Keith's race truck, for Round 2 in Wheatland, Eric volunteered his race truck. Early in the season, this was vital in the pursuit of the championship.
Don't forget to look for the World Series of Off-Road Racing, beginning this fall, on the SPEED Channel.