Cook Enjoys Solid NASCAR Oval-Track Debut at Nashville Despite Unscheduled Stop Midway Through Federated Auto Parts 300 LEBANON, Tenn. (Saturday, June 10, 2006) - A broken wheel spacer bolt turned Chris Cook's NASCAR Busch Series oval-track...
Cook Enjoys Solid NASCAR Oval-Track Debut at Nashville
Despite Unscheduled Stop Midway Through Federated Auto Parts 300
LEBANON, Tenn. (Saturday, June 10, 2006) - A broken wheel spacer bolt turned Chris Cook's NASCAR Busch Series oval-track debut into a story of what might have been as he drove the #43 Rio Grand/Shift Into Gear Dodge of the Curb Agajanian Performance Group to a 28th-place finish in tonight's Federated Auto Parts 300 at Nashville Superspeedway.
Cook, a veteran driving instructor and NASCAR road course specialist, made short work of learning the oval-track ropes through practice and qualifying on the 1.33-mile concrete tri-oval here. He put the #43 CAPG racing machine 29th on the starting grid and, after settling into a racing groove shortly after the green flag fell tonight, he was sitting in the top 25 by Lap 90 of tonight's 225-lap event. But it was then he made a fateful call to the pits to report a bad vibration that required a green-flag pit stop for inspection. It turned out to be a broken wheel spacer bolt that required another stop, under yellow on Lap 99, to remedy the problem. But the initial stop sent Cook two laps down to the lead pack and into 32nd place. He was able to make up four laps by the time the checkered flag flew and came home 28th.
Cook will be back behind the wheel of the #43 CAPG Dodge at next Saturday's Meijer 300 at Kentucky Speedway.
"It's no fun coming home 28th, but in the grand scheme of things, coming in here and making the show like we did, staying clean in the race and making friends on the track like we did, I think we accomplished everything we could have hoped for. Thanks to a lot of hard work by everybody in this organization, I think the Rio Grand/Shift Into Gear Dodge was almost as fast as the leaders, especially during the long runs. It was frustrating at the end having to play it safe and keep letting cars go by. That's hard on the ego, but it's a smart move in chess. Hey, (crew chief) Mark (Durgin) is new, I'm new, and we came here and did what we did. I think we got off to a good start. I want to run with these guys and grow with them. I'm definitely looking forward to next Saturday night at Kentucky."