Whisnant and PiranaZ start season in Pomona

STOCKBRIDGE, Ga. - The start of the 2001 NHRA Drag Racing season gets underway with the running of the 41st Annual AutoZone WinterNationals in Pomona, Calif., Feb 1-4. The new season means a clean slate for every race team going west to compete at...

STOCKBRIDGE, Ga. - The start of the 2001 NHRA Drag Racing season gets underway with the running of the 41st Annual AutoZone WinterNationals in Pomona, Calif., Feb 1-4. The new season means a clean slate for every race team going west to compete at the WinterNationals. Every driver and team will be looking around to see what changes have been made over the winter.

For Mark Whisnant, driver of the PiranaZ Sportswear Chevrolet S-10 Pro Stock Truck the new season brings many changes for this young team from Stockbridge, Ga. During the off-season Whisnant and the RW Performance race team made a number of changes to their Pro Stock Truck racing program in preparation for the 2001 season.

The first change was the acquisition of a new sponsor. PiranaZ Sportswear has come aboard as the primary sponsor on Whisnant's Chevy S-10. PiranaZ will provide financial support, and will back the Whisnant's efforts with a flashy new paint scheme and a line of T-shirts and apparel to be unveiled at the Gatornationals later this year.

"I'm fired up about having PiranaZ as our sponsor this year," said Whisnant. "We have been working very hard for the last year to land a sponsor that would provide enough financial support for us to race the full season, and would also fit in well with our team image. PiranaZ sportswear is extreme, cutting edge apparel. They have a unique look, and make a good fit with our team.

"PiranaZ will start the season with us in Pomona, and then by the time we get to Gainesville we will have a new paint scheme to unveil. PiranaZ will also unveil a some cool new T-shirts and apparel designs to go along with the paint scheme."

The second big change was the hiring of Kevin Horst to act as Crew Chief on Whisnant's Chevy S-10. Horst has many successful years of Pro Stock and Pro Stock Truck racing behind him. Most recently tuning Steve Johns to victory at the 2000 O'Reilly Fall Nationals in Dallas, Texas.

"I am also happy to announce the addition of Kevin Horst to our team," Whisnant continued. "Kevin will serve as my crew chief. We are very excited about having him on board. He brings years of experience and a wealth of knowledge to this team. This team can only benefit from having someone with his experience leading us.

"He went testing with us in Bradenton Fla., and everything just clicked. For our first time at the track with Kevin, we feel like we made considerable gains. I can see he is going to be a real asset to this team in 2001."

Looking ahead to the upcoming 2001 NHRA Pro Stock Truck season, Whisnant talk about his teams' goals for the season.

"Our goals for the coming season is to win a couple races, and finish out the year in the top five in the Winston points. Everyone on this team is serious about racing and is prepared to go the extra mile to win races this year. We want to make a real impression at the racetrack, and be part of the points hunt at the end of the season.

"We have real high hopes that with PiranaZa backing us financially and Kevin Horst as our Crew Chief that this year we can be real contenders for the 2001 Pro Stock Truck championship.

"When we get to Pomona we are coming out with all our guns smoking. We are loaded up with horsepower and everything we need is in place to win races. We are fired up and can not wait for the season to start."

Look for Mark Whisnant and the PiranaZ Chevrolet S-10 Pro Stock Truck when the 2001 NHRA Drag Racing season starts at the 41st Annual AutoZone WinterNationals on Feb 1-4 in Pomona, Calif.

-Patti Miles

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Series NHRA
Drivers Mark Whisnant , Steve J