NHRA Mac Tools U.S. Nationals Indianapolis Raceway Park Indianapolis, IN Aug. 30th - Spet. 3 Team Jeg's - Pro Stock Jeg Coughlin Jr. Jeg has his eye on winning Indy again For many drivers winning the U.S. Nationals is more prestigious then...
NHRA Mac Tools U.S. Nationals
Indianapolis Raceway Park
Aug. 30th - Spet. 3
Team Jeg's - Pro Stock
Jeg Coughlin Jr.
Jeg has his eye on winning Indy again
For many drivers winning the U.S. Nationals is more prestigious then winning a Championship. The reigning NHRA Pro Stock Champion, Jeg Coughlin Jr, will return to the Mac Tools U.S. Nationals as the defending winner. The familiar yellow and black Jeg's Mail Order machine marched through the field of NHRA's most competitive class from the No. 16 qualifying position to take the title last year.
"Winning last year from the No. 16 qualifying position is a perfect example of how competitive Pro Stock is. If you are one of the sixteen cars in the show on raceday you can win. Races are side-by-side and are won or lost by thousandths of a second round after round," explained Jeg.
Last year was not the first time that the youngest Coughlin has won Indy. He scored his first U.S. Nationals victory in '92 behind the wheel of a Super Gas roadster.
"I can remember winning that race like it was yesterday. It was the first time that I was racing in front of a crowd that large. There was just a wall of fans on each side of the track," said Jeg. "Our winner's circle was filled with family members and friends. It was a great day and one that I will always remember."
This year Jeg will enter the biggest and most prestigious race of the year ready to strike from the No. 4 position. He has 972 points and trails Mike Edwards by less then a round in a battle for the No. 3 spot. Jim Yates is 112 points ahead of Coughlin in the No. 2 slot and WJ leads by 210 points.
Coughlin has his eye on reclaiming the top spot. Jeg knows that it is consistency and taking advantage of opportunities that will make the difference down the stretch. Jeg is one of only six drivers that have qualifyied for all 17 races this season.
"We are still focused on winning the Championship. We are 11 rounds behind the top spot with 7 races to go," commented Jeg. "It's pretty simple. We need to not beat ourselves by making mistakes and make up ground when the guys ahead of us go out in early rounds. Our group is more than capable of winning. We are committed to getting our consistency back and winning races."
The competitiveness in Pro Stock has even increased this season. There have been 11 winner's in the 17 races run so far this season. Only Warren Johnson (5) and Jeg Coughlin (3) have claimed multiple victories of the 55 active Pro Stock drivers this season.
The start of the 2001 season brought a host of new, smaller and more aerodynamic bodies to the quartermile battlefield. The flagship vehicles for General Motors switched to the Chevrolet Cavalier and the Pontiac Grand Am. Dodge rolled out the Neon RT this year in Denver. Ford introduced the sleeker Mustang and a new Cougar at the end of last year.
"The new designs have helped drivers exceed the 200-mph barrier more often and create better racing for the fans. Fans get more excited when we run over 200-mph. You can hear the cheers and feel the excitement," said Jeg.