Coughlin finds extra steam in fresh motor SONOMA, Calif. (July 27) -- Sometimes you have to race smart, which is exactly what three-time world champion Jeg Coughlin Jr. did Friday during the first day of professional qualifying for the 20th...
Coughlin finds extra steam in fresh motor
SONOMA, Calif. (July 27) -- Sometimes you have to race smart, which is exactly what three-time world champion Jeg Coughlin Jr. did Friday during the first day of professional qualifying for the 20th annual Fram Autolite NHRA Nationals at Infineon Raceway.
After running a 6.72-second pass in his JEGS.com Chevrolet Cobalt in the opening round of action, Coughlin's crew elected to swap motors in his car to see if one of the engines they'd just received back from team owner Victor Cagnazzi's race shop in North Carolina was any better. Judging by Coughlin's much-improved 6.649 at 206.73 mph in Round 2, the team made the perfect call.
"We have a unique situation here in Sonoma where the Saturday morning session is usually the best of the weekend," Coughlin said. "That allowed us to try this other motor tonight to see what it was like because we had an idea it would be quicker. Normally, you have to go for it on Friday night but here we get a second chance.
"Barring anything bizarre, running at 11 a.m. on Saturday when that sea fog is still hanging over the valley here lends itself to great performances. Certainly we have room to improve and it's up to the guys to figure out how to fine-tune that new motor to get it on par with the top two or three guys, which includes my teammate Dave Connolly."
This event marks the sixth straight for the NHRA tour and teams are finding their supply closets looking rather bare.
"I'd hate to pay the air freight bill this month because the rigs haven't been back to reload for quite awhile," Coughlin said. "It's taxed all of us but the crew Victor has on this team, both at the track and back at the engine shop, is second-to-none. They are so committed to winning. When the guys at the engine shop told us to give this motor a try, we couldn't wait to get it between the rails."
-credit: team jegs