Real Pro Mod (RPM) Association driver, Steve Matusek was honored with the “Steve Engel Big Man, Big Heart” Award at the NHRA Pro Mod Racing Series season ending banquet in Las Vegas.
The award is named for Steve Engel, a Pro Mod driver who died following an accident at the 54th Annual U.S. Nationals in 2008. He raced cars for 21 years and cared passionately for the sport. Engel competed in 31 Pro Mod events, winning one race and making it to the finals in two others. He was known as a big man, standing over 6 feet tall, with an even bigger heart. The award in his name goes to the driver who the Pro Mod community feels embodies the spirit of Engel and his generous spirit.
“I am honored and extremely humbled to receive the Steven Engel award at the 2014 NHRA Pro Mod banquet,” said Matusek. “I did not know Steve Engel personally but I do know the sentiment those who did have for him. To be selected by his peers as the recipient of this great honor is very emotional yet gratifying. There is a very special place on my Mantel that will serve as a reminder of this great man and the responsibility we have to the next generation of Pro Mod racers to continue and make this class safer and keep it viable for years to come.”
This past year, Matusek drove a 2nd car for Danny Rowe Racing and Agave Underground Tequila. Matusek ended the season number six in points, consistently qualifying and going to the final round in Bristol. Matusek was also nominated by his Pro Mod peers for “Most Improved Driver of the Year.”
Past winners of the Steve Engel award have included Danny Rowe, Mike Knowles and Troy Coughlin.