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In late 1971 and early 1972, Downing & Ryan thought a Pro Stock Pinto would be fun to drive at the U.S. Nationals. Well, its short wheelbase puckered fearless John's shorts so much it was soon retired from competition. Around this time, Jim changed employers and joined Mullane Ford in Bergenfield, New Jersey, as parts and service director. He retired from drag racing in 1973.