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JC: When I quit, I always had it in the back of my mind that I'd likely do it again. And for years, the thought was lodged in my head. From, I'd say, 1980 until about 1994, I always left myself a little mental leeway that I might drive again ... but I didn't. By 1994, my kids were winning races. John had won in IHRA (1983 Winter Nationals) and NHRA (1992 Winston Finals) and Troy won Indy in Super Gas (1991). So at that point, some time in '94, I quit thinking about driving again. It just didn't fit into the itinerary.

DRO: So here you are. One of the most successful mail order businesses in racing, and your sons are winning races, most notably Jeg's 2000 NHRA title. Just from looking at the standings of Pro classes, how about Pro Stock? Still expect success? Do you have any comments, good, bad, or indifferent about the way NHRA's class is set up?

JC: I really don't see anything they're (NHRA) doing wrong. From our standpoint as a racing business, we did very well. Most fans know how many times the NHRA cameras and the sound were on in Jeg's car, and all of us thought the post-race interviews went real well. I might be off a position, but I believe we were fourth in all NHRA competition as far as on-camera sponsor exposure went.

As far as a world title ... I don't think anyone expected another run (seven wins in the first eight 2000 NHRA races), because that was a high water mark for us, and realistically, for anybody. That start went so well that by midyear we never tried to fool with what we thought was a successful formula. As the team manager, I sat in with Rich Maskin, Gary Pearman, and the boys, and I think we all agreed that we'd try to pick up five or six thousandths here or there, but we wouldn't go after any huge performance boosts. At best, we might try and improve e.t. by one-and-a-half thousandths.

This year, we are winless, but no one's upset. We had the old car for two races and then we had the new one at (NHRA Gatornationals). I thought it did well in its maiden voyages and besides the season is very young.

DRO: The future. Do you see all your guys still driving for a long time to come? Would there be any thought of moving up to a blown or nitro class?

JC: All my drivers are very much into the driving of the cars. Everyone's up-beat, and I wouldn't think you'd see anybody step out from behind the wheel for another 15 years. As far as ... what? fuel? ... I can't really say for sure. Sometimes the five of us sit around and talk and these things slip into the conversation. Pro Modified or even Top Fuel. As their father or a judge on their abilities, it wouldn't bother me if one of them wanted to go say, Pro Modified or Top Fuel. Overwhelmingly, it would be their decision to make. For the present, though, Pro Stock and Pro Stock Truck will be taking up the majority of our time. That and the business.


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