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Cook Focused on Carrying on Momentum After Successful Start to 2024

Posted By: Mary Lendzion
Written by Mary Lendzion
Photos by NMRA
After Bob Cook bought his 1990 Mustang in 1993, he drove it to and from work on a daily basis.
When the odometer in the car reached 125,000 miles, he hired a friend to put a fresh coat of paint on it so he could sell it, but he ended up falling in love with it all over again, and he decided to keep it.
Before long, he started buying performance parts for it, and NMRA VP Racing Madditives Renegade called his name in 2000, followed by NMCA Edelbrock Xtreme Street.
He went on to earn a championship in NMRA VP Racing Madditives in 2008, and remains wildly successful behind the wheel in both series.
In 2023, he finished in the fifth spot in NMRA VP Racing Madditives Renegade and in the eighth spot in NMCA Edelbrock Xtreme Street in his car with a 9.5 deck small-block Ford he built after machine work by Rich Groh Racing. It features a Dart block, Trick Flow High Port heads and a Holley Hi-Ram intake, and it is backed by a Turbo 400 by Steven Wardlow of Northern Performance.
While Cook was enhancing his combination with a ProCharger F-1A-94 for most of 2023, he swapped it with the ProCharger F-1A-91 toward the end of the race season and his car ran just as quick and fast with the smaller unit, which was a pleasant surprise for him and his tuner, Dale George, who uses a Holley Dominator EFI to keep the car clocking competitive numbers.

“When the 2023 race season was over, we went to a test session in Alabama because we had been having some traction issues, and we borrowed a transmission with a 1.60 first gear first gear because it was hard to leave the line with the blower and the available power with our transmission with a 1.70 gear,” said Cook. “We had success with the 1.60 gear. The car liked it. We were able to leave the line with more power and rpm, and we ran a personal best of 4.59. So after that, Steven Wardlow converted our transmission to the 1.60 gear.”
By February of 2024, Cook was on his way to the first NMRA race of the year, the
30th Annual NMRA Spring Break Shootout and Saturday Thrill Festival at Gainesville Raceway in Florida. In addition to qualifying in the second spot with a nice 4.762, Cook set the first class record of the year with a 4.768 and won the race with an off-the-throttle 5.04 after strong competitor Kelly Shotwell was forced to lift.
“We felt great after the race in Gainesville,” said Cook, who has support from ProCharger, Weldon, Rich Groh Racing, HPL, World Wide Bearing, Team Z Motorsports, Redline Motorsports, Roush Competition Engines, PJ Fab, Northern Performance Transmissions, Straightline Performance and Continental Competition. “Our passes were competitive, and we know we have more in the combination than the personal best pass of 4.59 that we had at the test session in Alabama.”

With that, Cook is looking forward to the 16th Annual NMRA/NMCA All-Star Nationals and Top of the Rock Thrill Festival presented by Sipple’s Speed and Performance, April 11-14, 2024 at Rockingham Dragway in North Carolina, where he hopes for more positive results on the path he is on.

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