Darlington is Cook's 100th start

DARLINGTON, SC (May 6, 2001) - There are literally thousands of "Saturday Night Racers" who dream about competing in the NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series. That's why Terry Cook is so proud to be making his 100th career NCTS start when the series...

DARLINGTON, SC (May 6, 2001) - There are literally thousands of "Saturday Night Racers" who dream about competing in the NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series. That's why Terry Cook is so proud to be making his 100th career NCTS start when the series takes the green flag in the Darlington 200 at Darlington (SC) Raceway, Saturday, May 12.

"To make 100 NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series starts is obviously a career milestone," said Cook, driver of the No. 29 K-Automotive Ford F-150. "To be able to do what we do for a living and to be able to race at venues like Darlington is an honor that I wish every driver had a chance to experience. I didn't even realize it's been 100 races because they flew by so fast."


Robert Brooks, NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series Program Director for Ford Racing Technology, presenting Terry Cook with an award for his 100th career start in the NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series. Photo: Courtesy of NASCAR

Cook will become just the 11th driver in NCTS history to eclipse the 100-start mark. Six of those drivers - Jack Sprague, Lance Norick, Rick Carelli, Bryan Reffner, Rick Crawford and Joe Ruttman - are still active NCTS competitors while Ron Hornaday, Jr., Butch Miller and Mike Bliss are currently inactive in the division.

"That's some pretty good company," said Cook, a native of Sylvania, OH. "I got involved in the Truck Series in 1996 making my first start at Milwaukee (WI). It wasn't until the 1998 season that I was able to run a full-time schedule. My fondest memory in the 100 starts occurred that year with my first win at Flemington (NJ) Speedway. So far, that's been my only win and I'm looking forward to the day when we can get back to Victory Lane again."

That could very well happen at Darlington. Since joining the K-Automotive team fielded by longtime series competitors Bob, Ron and Kay Keselowski, the combination has clicked right out of the box with Cook posting five Top-10 finishes in five events this season. That has the 33-year-old driver third in the championship chase and a threat to win at every race this season.

"It gives us more confidence knowing that Terry has been around that many races in the NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series," said Ron Keselowski. "One of the reasons that we have been successful so far this season is because of Terry's experience in the Series. I think Terry has paid enough dues where he is at the point where he is as good as anybody in the Series right now."

"I felt Terry could be very competitive and would be a good fit for our K-Automotive team," added Bob Keselowski. "We are at the level I thought we could be as far as being competitive. If we can run a whole race without have any problems like having a flat tire or hitting the wall, I know we can run in the Top-10 every race."

For more than 50 years, Darlington Raceway has been considered one of the toughest tracks NASCAR has to offer. The Darlington 200 will mark the first time the NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series has competed at "The Lady in Black" and "The Track Too Tough To Tame." In Cook's estimation, there's no better place to make his 100th career NCTS start than at the ultra demanding 1.366 mile-oval.

"I am very excited about competing at Darlington," said Cook. "It's really exciting to race at a track that I have never raced at previously. To me, it's a thrill because it presents a whole new challenge for me and the K-Automotive team. That's especially true at a track with rich history of NASCAR racing like Darlington has. I've been there and I've been able to walk around there, but I've never actually raced there. To make my 100th career Truck Series start will there will be something I will always look back on with pride as a real accomplishment."

The Darlington 200 at Darlington (SC) Raceway will be telecast live Saturday, May 12 on ESPN and will be broadcast live by MRN Radio beginning at 4:00 p.m. Eastern Daylight Time.

--TCR

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Series NASCAR Truck
Drivers Ron Hornaday Jr. , Jack Sprague , Lance Norick , Terry Cook , Rick Crawford , Joe Ruttman , Bryan Reffner , Mike Bliss , Butch Miller