Cook Texas race notes

FORT WORTH, TX (Oct. 14, 2000) - Terry Cook thought he had seen most everything in his NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series career. That is until he raced in the O'Reilly 400 at Texas Motor Speedway Friday night. "All you can say about our...

FORT WORTH, TX (Oct. 14, 2000) - Terry Cook thought he had seen most everything in his NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series career. That is until he raced in the O'Reilly 400 at Texas Motor Speedway Friday night. "All you can say about our night is 'wow'," Cook stated after a 17th-place finish. "Maybe it was the full moon or the fact it was Friday the 13th. I'm not superstitious, but you have to wonder after the kind of night we just had. What the heck, I don't think we could have had more things go wrong if we tried. It just seemed like we were jinxed or something." Cook was anything but jinxed in qualifying steering his No. 88 PickupTruck.com Chevrolet Silverado to the ninth starting positions with a lap of 177.719 miles per hour on the 1.5-mile Texas oval. At the drop of the green, the 32-year-old Sylvania, OH driver seemed content to play a waiting game preferring to save his best racing for the late stages of the event. "We started out just fine running in the Top-10 early in the race," said Cook. "We were just trying to put ourselves in a position to win the race later on. I wasn't pushing the truck hard at all and it was very comfortable to drive. It was a little bit loose when we would get someone close behind us, but we were going to work on that during the first round of pit stops. Then somewhere around 50 laps into the race, we dropped a cylinder in the motor and from then on, our day was just riding around trying to get as many points as we could." Several pit stops didn't solve the problem and Cook soldiered on hoping for the best possible finish. Then on Lap 108, the bottom appeared to fall out of the effort as Cook rolled to the garage area with an apparent engine failure. "I have to give credit where credit is due," Cook stated. "After we dropped a cylinder, I asked the crew what they wanted me to do and they had me come in and we changed sparkplugs. That didn't solve the problem, but at least we were able to isolate where it was. We were still holding our own on the lead lap running on just seven cylinders when I thought he engine blew up. I shut it off because I didn't want it to grind up any parts. "I coasted the truck into the garage area with a big trail of oil behind it," Cook continued. Turns out there was a hole in the oil pan and our crew chief, Jerry Cook, decided we were going to knock it back into place and weld it up. We're in a points race and we need to get as many as we can, so the guys welded her back together and we were able to go back on the racetrack and finish the race. We gained six spots in the final running order because these PickupTruck.com guys refused to quit. They took a bad day and turned it into something better." Cook 17th place in the final running order earned the team $9000 in prize money. Cook and his PickupTruck.com mates will try to better that effort when the final NCTS event of the 2000 season takes the green flag at California Speedway, Saturday, October 28. The race on the 1.5-mile Fontana, CA oval will take the green flag at 4 P.M. Eastern Time and will be telecast live on ESPN2. The race will also be broadcast live by MRN radio.

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Series NASCAR Truck
Drivers Terry Cook