47th Annual Banquet of Champions

St. Louis Indy 500 racer Robby McGehee and 2014 Lifetime Membership recipient "Butch" Welsch at the 47th Annual Banquet of Champions. © Don Figler Photo

St. Louis Indy 500 racer Robby McGehee and 2014 Lifetime Membership recipient “Butch” Welsch at the 47th Annual Banquet of Champions.
© Don Figler Photo

The 47th Annual Banquet of Champions, held January 18, celebrated the accomplishments of the St. Louis motorsports community in 2013.

In addition to honoring local champions, we presented eight annual awards.  Our most prestigious award, presented for long-term dedication to motorsports via the media and named for our founder, Dale Mueller, went to St. Louis Post-Dispatch sports reporter Ken Roberts.  We presented the Lifetime Membership Award to George “Butch” Welsch, a longtime dedicated supporter of the Fan Club and St. Louis racing and racers.  A very surprised Dan Eby received our George Award, which we give to the most active club member.  The Bob Mueller Award for dedication behind the scenes was awarded to Sheila Burkett of the St. Louis Sports Car Club of America for her work with their Club Racing program and social media.  Our Vice-President Dave Beimfohr was stunned to receive the Mike Meurer Ambassador Award for his contributions to motorsports as our V.P. and with Jr. Dragsters across the Midwest through his Midwest Jr. Super Series.  The Curt Lehman Sportsmanship Award was presented to PJ Passiglia for his work as a sponsor, crew member and race fan, supporting and keeping racers on the track.  The Outstanding Media Award went to WDLJ’s Tim Herbst for his work with the radio show Pedal to the Metal and the All American Race Talk website.  We presented the Mechanic’s Award to the duo of Don Conner and Jerry Hodges for their innovation and design in building an SCCA National Championship-winning Formula 1000 car that absolutely dominated its class.

Thanks to Dwight “Cyclone” Barbeau and Ray Eby for bringing out their vintage stock cars along with John Taylor’s dragster.   Taylor’s dragster is a 2000 Jerry Haas car, 632 c.i. big block Chevrolet, it travels the quarter-mile in 7.80 seconds at 175 MPH!  “Fireball” Lenny Garson also had some fabulous old-time racing photos on display.

Congratulations to the winners of the cooler – Gary Bach, the wine basket – Tina (Mrs. Scott) Weber, and the 50/50 Michael Deloff.

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