It's been a little over eight years since Tacoma, Washington native Mark Faul left his day job as a printing salesman to follow his dream, which first ignited during high school and never refused to stop smoldering. It's been a bumpy ride, but the highs far outweigh the lows, making them easier to ignore altogether according to Faul.
The big bucks come in the national events and big checks like his one allow Faul to stay on the road fulfilling his dream.
The fourth time was the charm for Faul at the JEGS' event in Joliet, this was his first ever Allstar final win.
"Victories like winning the JEGS' Allstars in Joliet (just outside Chicago) definitely make it worthwhile," said Faul. "I'm fortunate to have certain freedoms without a regular job, and wins like this are necessary to be able to keep going."
Last year alone Faul spent 208 hauling his two race cars, a Super Stock GT/EA 1998 Grand Am and a Stock C/SA 1969 Chevelle around the country, competing in over 30 races, including national and divisional NHRA events, a few IHRA meets and a handful of bracket races. Faul was able to add the Allstars hardware, his first, to an already sizeable collection of accomplishments.
Faul's scorecard tallying now stands at 10 Super Stock victories in 13 final rounds, four Stock titles in eight attempts, a Super Comp runner-up in 2002, and a near double at the Fontana Pacific Sports Nationals in 2008, where he won Super Stock and finished second in Stock.
"It's been a real roller coaster this year. I started slowly, and then was runner up in my Chevelle at the IHRA national in Baton Rouge, Louisiana. Then I hit a slump for a month with early exits, until I won the divisional event in Boise, Idaho. Then some more bad luck at the next three races, including blowing up my best engine in my Grand Am in Fontana this year. But things went well in the Allstars, so my confidence is better again."
Faul has earned the right to be a JEGS Allstars on five different occasions, but has come up short until now. And three times before Faul accumulated enough points to race his Super Stocker at this event, but disappointingly went out in the first round each time. This year though in the Super Stock final, Faul put the full force of his years of experience to work, notching a better light and running closer to his dial - an 11.851 on an11.80 dial.
Faul says he sincerely thanks the support he's been given from K&N over the years and that he's pleased for every single victory he can share with his sponsors. "I use their air and oil filters exclusively on the racecars and my streetcar," adds Faul.
Even though he has dialed back his marathon schedule a tad this year, aiming to spend no more than a month on the road at a time, "There's still a lot of racing left this year," he says.
"Next week I'm in Sonoma again, then there's a divisional race in Spokane, Washington. Then I have a week off before Brainerd, Minnesota, and then I'm back home to another Seattle divisional event. I'm unsure about Indy and the next few races after that, but for sure I'm running in Las Vegas and Pomona at the end of the season."
Find K&N products for your vehicle using the K&N application search then use the K&N dealer search to find a K&N dealer in your part of the world.