Speeding up sequential programs on multicores is a challenging problem that is in urgent need of a solution. Automatic parallelization of irregular pointer-intensive codes, exemplified by the SPECint codes, is a very hard problem. This paper shows that, with a helping hand, such auto-parallelization is possible and fruitful. This paper makes the following contributions: (i) A compiler-framework for extracting pipeline-like parallelism from outer program loops is presented. (ii) Using a light-weight programming model based on annotations, the programmer helps the compiler to find thread-level parallelism. Each of the annotations specifies only a small piece of semantic information that compiler analysis misses, e.g. stating that a variable is dead at a certain program point. The annotations are designed such that correctness is easily verified. Furthermore, we present a tool for suggesting annotations to the programmer. (iii) The methodology is applied to auto-parallelizeseveral SPECint benchmarks. For the benchmark with most parallelism (hmmer), we obtain a scalable 7-fold speedup on an AMD quad-core dual processor. The annotations constitute a parallel programming model that relies extensively on a sequential program representation. Hereby, the complexity of debugging is not increased and it does not obscure the source code. These properties could prove valuable to increase the efficiency of parallel programming.