Pawuk sits out 2007 season

Pawuk To Sit Out '07 Season; Already Planning '08 Return RICHFIELD, OH 1/11/07 After consultations with his family, sponsors and his employees, Mark "Cowboy" Pawuk has decided to forego the 2007 NHRA POWERade Series season. It will be the...

Pawuk To Sit Out '07 Season; Already Planning '08 Return

RICHFIELD, OH 1/11/07 After consultations with his family, sponsors and his employees, Mark "Cowboy" Pawuk has decided to forego the 2007 NHRA POWERade Series season. It will be the first time in 21 years that the Pro Stock veteran's colorful Pontiac won't be part of the national drag racing scene.

"This was one of the hardest decisions I've ever had to make," Pawuk acknowledged from his offices at Empaco Equipment Corporation in Richfield. "What's made it even harder for me is that our sponsors, who have demonstrated amazing loyalty, have been so encouraging. Every single one of them has indicated that when we return to action next season they'll continue to have their logos displayed on our car, and I'm very grateful for their support.

"During the last few months I've also realized that, with my growing children, my family situation and my business, I just need to stick closer to home for the next few months. There's just no way to be truly competitive in NHRA Pro Stock drag racing if you can't devote your every waking hour to it, and at this point I'm just not able to make that kind of commitment.

"It's my intention to pay very close attention to what's going on at the track as well as to new technical developments, and I feel comfortable making a commitment at that level, because I have ever intention of returning to competition next season.

"As everyone knows, it's extremely difficult to be truly competitive without a significant major sponsor, so we're continuing to work towards that goal. As numerous racers have proven in the past, it's not necessary to be out there every weekend in order to put together a major sponsorship program, so I don't think my absence from competition on a weekly basis is going to hurt in that area.

"Sitting here in my office, in the middle of winter, it's almost easy to make this kind of decision, but I know that when qualifying begins at the Winternationals on Thursday, February 8th, I'm going to be wishing I was putting on my helmet. But, this is the right decision for me at this point, so I won't have any regrets later on.

"I've already made my travel plans for a number of races this year, including the Winternationals, so just in case you were thinking you'd seen the last of me, you can forget that notion right now. By the same token, you can plan on seeing our car back in competition at the 2008 NHRA Winternationals!"

-credit: mpr

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