---- — GREENSBURG – The Midwest TQ Racing League presented by Jenmarco.com celebrated its fifth season on Saturday at the Hampton Inn & Suites in Greensburg, where 75 guests were on hand to honor 2013 MTQRL Champions Nick and Joe Speidel.
Along with champions cups, plaques and other awards, an additional $6,675 in cash and gift certificates were presented bringing the season total to over $43,500.
Nick Speidel, driving his father Joe’s No. 21 Honda powered three-quarter midget, completed his dream season earning his first championship. Speidel went on a tear obliterating the competition and rewriting the MTQRL record books. Speidel finished the season with seven feature and nine Perfect North Slopes heat wins, and scored an amazing 84.15 percent of the points available. Mechanical problems prohibited him from starting the feature on Aug. 17 at Shelbyville or that percentage could have been much higher.
In 11 feature starts, Speidel’s worst finish was an eighth place. To go along with his seven wins, he also had a second, third and fourth place finish. Speidel led 122 of the 265 feature laps and was presented the Tony Stewart Foundation Leader of the Pack Award. Speidel also won a Jackson Oil & Solvents Duel for Fuel and finished third in the Duel standings.
Tate Martz’s reign as the only champion in MTQRL history finally ended as he finished the 2013 season in second place and his car owner Roger Ramsey claimed the third spot. The highlight of his season came on Aug. 10 at the Montpelier Motor Speedway when he won his heat race and led all 20 laps to record his 18th career feature win. Martz continued his qualifying prowess in Ramsey’s No. 1 Old Canal Smokehouse Beast Honda by setting quick time at three of the four qualifying events, won three Perfect North Slopes heat races and a Jackson Oil & Solvents Duel for Fuel finishing second in the Duel standings.
Brett Hankins, driving his father Sam’s No. 14 Zatkoff Seals & Packing/SpeedPartz.com Kleine TQ, finished the season as the third place driver while Sam was the second place owner. Hankins scored seven top three feature finishes, won four Perfect North Slopes heat races, a semi feature and a Jackson Oil & Solvents Duel for Fuel.
Fourth place went to Bobby Walton driving the Steed Motorsports No. 8 E & S Transmission/John Shewbrooks Racing/Tricia Schlechtweg Massage Beast Honda. Walton, who retired after the season finale, started all 12 features and ended the season with five top three and eight top 10 finishes.
Logan Arnold, driving his parents Kevin & Angie Arnold’s No. 43 Lynch Motorsports/Earl’s of Indy Precision Honda claimed fifth in the season standings in only his third season of competition. John Doyle and Roberts’ Family Motorsports presented Arnold with the prestigious SSG Jeremy W. Doyle Memorial Most Improved Driver Award. Arnold was one of only three drivers to start every feature and raced his way to four top five and nine top 10 feature finishes. Arnold also won a semi feature and five Perfect North Slopes heat races (second only to champion Speidel).
Jon Steed driving the No. 7 Steed Motorsports Beard’s Heating & Cooling/Dusty Flannery State Farm Insurance/Tricia Schlechtweg Massage McClure Honda finished his best season to date in sixth place. Steed ended the year with three top five and five top 10 feature finishes.
Seventh place went to Cody Kiewitt driving his grandfather Larry’s No. 60 Don’s Log & Farm/Klinge Farms/Maschino Industries Phantom Honda. The former Tony Stewart Racing Rookie of the Year ended the season with four top 10 feature finishes and a Perfect North Slopes heat win. His best run of the season was a fourth place feature finish on Aug. 30 at the Gas City I-69 Speedway,
Matt Hedrick, in his first full season of competition, claimed eighth place driving his mother Emily’s No. 33 Intat Precision/Hedrick’s Mowing & Landscaping/Unlimited Electric/POC Industries/J & D Catering/PKG Motorsports Beast Honda. Hedrick ended the season on a high note by scoring his first feature win on Oct. 12 at the Brownstown Speedway. Along with his win Hedrick had five more top 10 feature finishes and two Perfect North Slopes heat wins.
Ninth place in the season standings went to sophomore driver Tristan Maggart driving his parents Glen & Chris Maggart’s No. 08 Crossroad Carriers/ASC Graphics/Indiana Insurance Solutions Beast Honda. Maggart started 11-of-12 features finishing in the top 10 on four occasions.
Rounding out the top 10 was Dustin Wheeldon driving his own No. 35 Mann Racing/HD Appliance/Geist Chiropractic/Steve Wheeldon Electric Kleine Honda. Although he ran a limited schedule Wheeldon finished the year with three top five and five top 10 feature finishes, two semi feature and two Perfect North Slopes heat wins.
Drivers presented awards for their 11th through 15th finish in the season standings included Robbie Roland, Rick Robinson, Chris Mann, Aaron Percell and Chad Hankins. Owners 11 through 15 were Doug Roland, Rick Robinson, Danny Percell, Chad Hankins and Wayne May/J Parks.
Aaron Percell was honored as the 2013 Tony Stewart Racing Rookie of the Year receiving a plaque and a check for $250. Second and third place rookie drivers Dalton Miller and Rex Griffin were also recognized and presented checks of $150 and $100 respectively.
Tagline (right aligned):— Rushville Republican