Sonoma: Jeg Coughlin Jr preview

Coughlin up for R&R&R -- Rest, Relaxation, and Racing. SONOMA, Calif. (July 21) -- When you drag race at 24 national events per season, like three-time and reigning Pro Stock world champion Jeg Coughlin Jr., your vacations tend to coincide with...

Coughlin up for R&R&R -- Rest, Relaxation, and Racing.

SONOMA, Calif. (July 21) -- When you drag race at 24 national events per season, like three-time and reigning Pro Stock world champion Jeg Coughlin Jr., your vacations tend to coincide with your job. Such is the case this week as the 52-time national event winner spends some time in California's renowned wine country for some R&R&R -- Rest, Relaxation, and Racing.

"The Sonoma race has become a bit of a yearly family retreat for us," Coughlin said from the heart of the Napa Valley. "For the past 10 years we've come here directly from the Seattle race for some golf and swimming and general lounging around. My son, lil' Jeggie, is on summer vacation so he's able to join us, and we really have some fun."

Although Coughlin is doing his best to do nothing for a few days, he admits his mind is never far away from the upcoming Fram-Autolite NHRA Nationals at picturesque Infineon Raceway.

"Make no mistake, we're here to win," said Coughlin, who claimed glory at Infineon in 2003, the last time he entered the race as the defending series champion. "This is an exciting race for a number of reasons. First, it's a Bruton Smith-owned facility so it's first-rate. Second, the weather can produce absolutely exceptional racing conditions.

"As much as I like a smooth golf swing or a dip in the pool, nothing compares to a perfect run down the quarter mile. It's quite a feeling. Hopefully, I have it eight times this weekend."

Coughlin is solidly in the chase for one of the 10 playoff spots up for grabs in the six-race Countdown to 1, which begins in September at the inaugural Carolina NHRA Nationals in Charlotte. He's currently fourth in the rankings, 182 points off the lead. Coughlin led the points on two separate occasions earlier in the year.

"We've had a bit of a tough stretch lately after starting so well," Coughlin said. "It's not for lack of trying, or really lack of performance for that matter, we've just come up on the wrong end of those races that are decided by an inch or two, whereas in the past we were getting those wins.

"No complaints; we just need to dig down and get a little more out of ourselves. We will be in the mix for the championship by the time Charlotte rolls around and the Countdown to 1 begins, I can assure you of that."

-credit: team jegs

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Series NHRA
Drivers Jeg Coughlin