FONTANA, CA (February 25, 2007) -- Racing has a way of sometimes not producing results to match the effort. That proved to be the case for driver Terry Cook and his HT Motorsports team this weekend as they soldiered to a 30th-place finish in the...
FONTANA, CA (February 25, 2007) -- Racing has a way of sometimes not producing results to match the effort.
That proved to be the case for driver Terry Cook and his HT Motorsports team this weekend as they soldiered to a 30th-place finish in the San Bernardino 200 NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series race at California Speedway.
"Fortunately, we don't always measure our results by our finish," said Cook after the event. "We also measure our success by how the whole weekend went and how the team performed. I've already seen that our HT Motorsports team is coming together. We were fast in practice and fast at times during the race. We're still a pretty new team -- just two races together -- and I think it's just a matter of time before we put a full weekend together and get this Toyota Tundra running up front."
Cook appeared to be one of the front-runners after a solid practice session Thursday had the Sylvania, OH driver near the top of the speed charts. However, some adjustments to his Harris Trucking Tundra prior to Friday's time trials didn't produce the desired results as Cook qualified 29th in the 34-truck field with a lap of 42.165 seconds (170.758 miles per hour).
"We picked a set of shocks for the back of the truck that just didn't work the way we had hoped they would," Cook stated. "We had a pretty good truck in practice and we were just trying to make it a little bit better. Our run wasn't for lack of effort, we just missed the set-up a little bit."
Because the event was an impound race where the team couldn't make any adjustments to the truck prior to the green flag, Cook had to start the race with the same shock package on his truck. The results were predictable as Cook struggled to maintain control of hismount on the super fast California oval eventually going a lap down to the leaders.
"We started off the race really, really loose," said Cook. "It was probably one of the loosest trucks I have ever driven on a two-mile race track. We had a plan to change the rear shocks on pit road early during the race, but we didn't get that opportunity until late in the race."
Thanks to some solid adjustments on his early pit stops, Cook was still able to click off some of the fastest laps of the race and battle his way back on the lead lap with just over 25 circuits remaining in the 100-lap event.
"We had good strategy to get our lap back and we tried to change the shocks to improve the handling of our Toyota Tundra and get back up there and race for position late in the event," Cook stated. "Unfortunately, we weren't able to do that and we gave back the lap we had just earned on the racetrack when we finally came in and changed the rear shocks on our last pit stop."
Cook's 30th-place effort was worth $10,985 in prize money and 73 championship points. Meanwhile, Mike Skinner won the race with Ron Hornaday, Jr., Jack Sprague, Carl Edwards and Ted Musgrave completing the Top-5 finishers.
"That's the hardest I have ever worked to bring back a straight truck," said Cook. "You ask the race winner -- Mike Skinner -- and I guarantee he'll tell you he didn't work half as hard as I did tonight. When these trucks are dialed in and fast, they are easy to drive. When they're not, they are a handful. Tonight, we had a handful."
Cook and his No. 59 HT Motorsports Toyota Tundra will be hoping for better results when they return to action on Friday, March 16, in the American Commercial Lines 200 at Atlanta Motor Speedway.
-credit: ht motorsports