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Yates yearning for return to glory

Updated: May 28, 2005, 2:57 PM ET
By Bill Stephens | Special to ESPN.com

Jim Yates remembers 1996 and 1997.

Why wouldn't he? For those two magical years, he and his crew chief/engine builder at the time, Richard Maskin, were the undisputed pacesetters in the NHRA Pro Stock category. In those two dominant seasons, Yates & Co. won 17 national events, qualified No. 1 13 times, and came within a single round of sweeping the Western Swing, losing to Mike Edwards in the 1997 Seattle final. Yates was as hot as a drag racer can get.

And then, at the second event ...

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