Houston: Tompkins Friday qualifying notes

Baytown, Texas - - There's an adage that says: If it wasn't for bad luck, I'd have no luck at all. Today, that adage is certainly true for Sam Tompkins, from Atlanta, driver of the Tompkins Motorsports Chevy S-10 Pro Stock Truck. For the second...

Baytown, Texas - - There's an adage that says: If it wasn't for bad luck, I'd have no luck at all. Today, that adage is certainly true for Sam Tompkins, from Atlanta, driver of the Tompkins Motorsports Chevy S-10 Pro Stock Truck.

For the second consecutive race, Tompkins fell victim to the mechanical gremlins. This time it forced the team to change engines and revert to his backup power plant.

"We broke a lifter and we felt it could do more damage to the engine to put a new lifter in at this time," said a disappointed Tompkins. "The team from Panella Motorsports came and took the motor out. They're going to take the motor back to their shop in California and go through the entire engine and have it back for our next race in Atlanta. We felt that was best. You can't take a chance and mess up an $80,000 motor just to rush through something and try to get it ready for next session."

Tompkins has confidence in his back up engine. "I think the motor has enough power to qualify, but everything has got to be just right. I mean, we've got to have the clutch, the suspension, everything exactly right to qualify."

The final two qualifying sessions for the O'Reilly Nationals presented by Pennzoil are scheduled for tomorrow here at Houston Raceway Park.

-Mickey Schultz

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