The Mac Tools Gatornationals is the third race on the 24 race NHRA Winston Drag Racing schedule. Team Jeg's intends to restart their season and return to their Championship form of last season at Gainesville Raceway. Reigning Pro Stock Champion...
The Mac Tools Gatornationals is the third race on the 24 race NHRA Winston Drag Racing schedule. Team Jeg's intends to restart their season and return to their Championship form of last season at Gainesville Raceway.
Reigning Pro Stock Champion Jeg Coughlin Jr is currently No. 8 with 106 points. There are only 20 points that separate the No. 8 spot from the No. 3 spot. Jeg is 87 points from returning to the top of NHRA's most competitive professional class.
Troy Coughlin is resting in the No. 15 position and ready to strike when he gets to Florida. Troy was the runner up last year at the Mac Tools Gatornationals. He was plagued by a freak accident with the transmission that caused the car to go from second to fourth gear in the final round. With another strong performance in Gainesville, Troy can shoot up deep into the top ten in the points.
The primary reason for the team feeling they can restart their season is the debut of their brand '01 Chevrolet Cavaliers. Team Jeg's took delivery of the Jerry Bickel built machines late in January. With a limited amount of testing time available and the travel time to get from Ohio to California, the team began the season with their proven Oldsmobile Cutlass'. Since then, the team has spent a significant amount of time refining and enhancing the sleek new yellow and black Jeg's machines.
"Clint Allerton, Mike Cunningham, Craig Hankinson, Gary Pearman, Rick Rossiter and Wayne Perdue have really spent a lot of time improving the cars and getting them ready for battle," commented Jeg.
The team spent three days testing at Gainesville Raceway (2/26-2/28). The majority of the emphasis was spent on learning what the cars responded well to and what upset the cars. Jeg and Troy each made 15 runs over the three-day test session. The team left Gainesville satisfied and the cars headed back to the shop for final adjustments and refinements. The team's engines went straight to Richard Maskin's shop from Florida to be rebuilt.
"I am really excited about the new cars," explained Troy. "After my first pass testing I got on the radio and told everyone that I felt like I was driving a Cadillac."
Gainesville Raceway is one of the few tracks that Team Jeg's has not conquered. Both drivers seem to qualify well and run impressive numbers. With Team Jeg's returning to Gainesville with new cars and fresh engines they look for the engines to be strong right out of the trailer.
"We would like nothing more than to finish one and two at the first race with our new Chevy Cavaliers," said Jeg. "There is a lot of excitement about racing at the Mac Tools Gatornationals. It is the first race of the season that fans can see a string of record breaking side-by-side runs in Pro Stock."
"Mac Tools has been a great supporter of Team Jeg's through the years and we are both based in Central Ohio," said Troy. "Jeg's will be involved with some really creative programs later in the season with Mac Tools. Winning the Mac Tools Gatornationals would be a real bonus for Jeg's and Mac Tools."