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Published: Thursday, 5/29/2003

2 wheels and in a hurry


Maybe “rockets'' would be a better word than rides to describe McGowan's adventure on wheels. This is because McGowan, the 2002 Norwalk Raceway Park Super Bike Champion, covers the quarter-mile drag strip in an average of 8.4 seconds at a speed of 150 mph.

McGowan, who has been racing motorcycles since he was 15, describes the eight-second, quarter-mile run as a rush. You really don't have time to think about anything.''

But before he completes his eight-second pass McGowan, reacting more than thinking, has shifted five times. Keeping the bike straight down the quarter-mile strip “is pretty much like riding a bicycle,'' McCowan said: ``It pretty much drives itself. You just hang on.''

McCowan credits his reaction time at the starting line with many of his victories. “I don't worry about the person in the other lane. I just try to stay calm and focused and race myself.'' Staying focused on your starting light is especially important in the weekly bracket races at Norwalk where the rider with the slower qualifying time gets a head start at the line.

Like any successful racer McCowan gives much of the credit for his success to his team which in this case is one person, Kevin Assad of Elmore. Assad, who builds the engines and many of the motorcycle's other parts, was named “Crew Chief of the Year” at last winter's Norwalk Raceway Park Awards Banquet. McGowan, who has never ridden a motorcycle on the street, is currently looking for a sponsor so he can compete in national events.

wCHEAP TRANSPORTATION: Pointing out the economics of the new 4-Cylinder Stock Car division, Kevin Stepinski, who won last weekend's feature race at Flat Rock Speedway, told the crowd that he had paid just $100 for his ride. Second-place finisher Dennis Mayville drove his car to work until a couple of weeks ago.

wTOLEDO SPEEDWAY: Sunday night at Toledo Speedway the headline event will be the Faygo 100, which is leg No.2 of the Royal Truck and Trailer/G Tec Truck Equipment ARCA late model Glass City Gold Cup Series. A large field of cars is expected for the 100-lap contest on the half-mile paved oval.

The ARCA A-1 Auto Parts Factory Stocks and the MCR Dwarf Cars will also make the trip to Toledo for the Sunday event. The pits open at 1, practice begins at 2:30, time trials are set for 4 and racing begins at 5 p.m.

wCAR SHOW: Flag City Classics, Fostoria, will play host to a two-day car show June 14-15 at the Hancock County Fairgrounds in Findlay. For more information call 419-423-3663 or 419-387-7286.

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