SOUTH BOSTON, VA (September 21, 2001) - After a disappointing 31st-place finish at Richmond International Raceway, the most recent event on the 2001 NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series tour, Terry Cook is counting on the return of his early season...
SOUTH BOSTON, VA (September 21, 2001) - After a disappointing 31st-place finish at Richmond International Raceway, the most recent event on the 2001 NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series tour, Terry Cook is counting on the return of his early season short-track success in the NetZero 250 at South Boston Speedway.
"It's the last short track race of this season," said Cook of the South Boston event. "Our Power Stroke® Diesel Ford always does really well at short tracks. We just had a problem at Richmond - a hole in the radiator - that prevented us from another Top-10 finish there. I have never been to South Boston, but I have seen some races from there on television. When I found out that we were going to race there, I started paying a little more attention."
Cook won't be the only 'rookie' at South Boston as the NetZero 250 marks the first time the NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series will appear at the rough and tumble, .400-mile Virginia oval.
"From watching the races on TV, South Boston seems to be shaped like Martinsville (VA) Speedway, but not as tight in the corners," said Cook. "The corners remind me more of an Indianapolis Raceway Park corner. Maybe, not as big of a radius, but it looks like it's a progressively banked track. It's where you can get down on the flat and run up just a little bit. We will probably enter there with a combined Martinsville and IRP set-up. We finished third at Martinsville and second at IRP, so if our set-up is close, we'll be running up front again."
"From what I heard, South Boston is similar to a local track that we've ran up here in Michigan called Owosso," said K-Automotive crew chief Bob Keselowski. "As far as being short- and a low-speed track, it's probably going to require a setup similar to the one we'd run there. I feel pretty good about our chances because Terry's been to Owosso and has always been good on the shorter tracks."
The race at the historic South Boston oval is a return to NASCAR's short-track roots. From 1982 through last season, the NASCAR Busch Series competed at the track 35 times. Prior to 1972, the track was also a staple on the NASCAR Grand National, now Winston Cup tour.
"I'm looking forward to inaugural race at South Boston because I enjoy the Friday night genre of short track racing," said Cook. "We've had three weeks off and I'm more than ready to jump back in the seat. We only have four races left after this one and we want to make these the best for Power Stroke Diesel, International and Ford."
Attention to detail at South Boston won't only be limited just to the driver according to K-Automotive team spotter, Kay Keselowski.
"Being the second set of eyes for the driver at South Boston is going to keep me pretty busy," she stated. "It's a challenge to try to keep your driver out of trouble and to keep things going forward. I enjoy the short tracks because that's what our race team started out on. It's a new venue for us and I know there's going to be a lot of action there. At these short tracks, you just have to stay focused and be on your toes. If we can stay out of trouble, I think we can look forward to a good finish."
"Our biggest concern is leaving there without having the truck beat up because South Boston is a body slamming, bumping type of track," added Bob Keselowski. "We want to leave there with the front, rear and two sides of our Power Stroke Diesel Ford in one piece. We have to get ready for Texas a couple of days later and we would like to keep the truck intact."
Cook, seventh in the 2001 NCTS standings (256 points out of first place), and his Power Stroke Diesel team will take the green flag in the NetZero 250 at South Boston Speedway, Friday, September 28, at 7 pm Eastern Daylight Time. The event will be telecast live by ESPN2 and broadcast on MRN Radio.