Memphis: Mark Pawuk preview

Pawuk's GTO Headed To Gateway Int'l. Raceway For Pre-Memphis Test RICHFIELD, OH 8/14/06 Following a disappointing DNQ at the Lucas Oil Nationals in Brainerd, MN over the weekend Mark "Cowboy" Pawuk made a last second change in his team's plans...

Pawuk's GTO Headed To Gateway Int'l. Raceway For Pre-Memphis Test

RICHFIELD, OH 8/14/06 Following a disappointing DNQ at the Lucas Oil Nationals in Brainerd, MN over the weekend Mark "Cowboy" Pawuk made a last second change in his team's plans for the coming week.

"Instead of bringing the car back here to our shop to go over everything the guys are headed for Gateway International Raceway in Madison, Illinois for some testing," he said. "After going over pretty much everything at Brainerd on Sunday we discussed our options, and crew chief Marcus Bowen, mechanic/test driver Craig Hankinson and I decided that our best move would be to get the car back on the track immediately. We're going to see if we can spot some problem we might have missed during last weekend's race. Craig will do the driving during the test session, as he's a licensed Pro Stock driver and has consistently provided the team with exceptional seat-of-the-pants feedback. His input is an invaluable aid to what the onboard computer comes up with.

"The guys will spend at least one full day at Gateway and then head on down to Memphis.

"There's only so much you can accomplish during an actual NHRA POWERade Series national event because, like everyone else, we're restricted to four qualifying runs over a two day period. In testing we might make as many as five runs in a single afternoon. There's also the possibility of making a whole series of starting line launches to see if we can get the car 'up on the tires' right off the line, which is also something you just can't do during a regular race.

"Frankly, my emotions have been running from satisfaction to frustration in the last few weeks because we know the car is 'right,' but we've got to get our horsepower problems solved if we hope to be competitive coming down the stretch. As things now stand I'd be satisfied if we could qualify at each of the year's remaining races. I don't think there's much chance of our making a Top 10 points finish this year, but there's no chance at all if we can't qualify. Testing at Gateway is going to tell us a lot about our chances for the rest of the year."

-credit: mpr

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About this article
Series NHRA
Drivers Mark Pawuk , Craig Hankinson