Phoenix: Mark Pawuk final summary

Three Thousandths Of A Second An Eternity For The Cowboy! CHANDLER, AZ 2/26/06 As any fan of rodeo knows, eight seconds is the time to beat. That's the amount of time a rough stock rider must stay aboard to score points and possibly earn a...

Three Thousandths Of A Second An Eternity For The Cowboy!

CHANDLER, AZ 2/26/06 As any fan of rodeo knows, eight seconds is the time to beat. That's the amount of time a rough stock rider must stay aboard to score points and possibly earn a gold buckle. In Pro Stock drag racing eight seconds is way too long. If you're going to be in contention for the gold, your car had better traverse the quarter in the mid six second range.

After a stellar start at the season-opening Winternationals two weeks ago Mark "Cowboy" Pawuk fell a slim three thousandths of a second short of making one of the toughest Pro Stock fields in NHRA history. The bump spot for the 16-car field was 6.730 seconds, but the best Pawuk's colorful Pontiac GTO could muster was a run of 6.733 seconds, leaving him more than a bit dejected.

"We started out on a high note," he said after qualifying ended, "but this weekend the wheels just came off. We put a different motor in the car on Friday and that really threw us a curve, and we never recovered. We made three runs that weren't really very good, but in all honesty, we were never in contention.

"I thought we might pull it out on the last run, but the transmission shifted from third to fifth. I could tell as soon as the car left the starting line that it wasn't 'right.'

"We're going to stay here and test on Monday and try to get back to the setup we know works. We've got to be more dedicated to doing what we know works, and stay away from trying things we're not sure of.

"I'll admit that missing this race is a big setback for us, but the season's still young and we'll bounce back, but without question, this was a very disappointing weekend for not only our team, but for our sponsors as well. The simple way of putting it is that we're better than this."

-mpr

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Series NHRA
Drivers Mark Pawuk