DELAWARE, Ohio -- A little more than a year ago, Troy Coughlin made the difficult decision to leave the NHRA Pro Stock class where he'd been a fixture for the better part of a decade. Troy left Pro Stock in order to pursue a championship in the...
DELAWARE, Ohio -- A little more than a year ago, Troy Coughlin made the difficult decision to leave the NHRA Pro Stock class where he'd been a fixture for the better part of a decade. Troy left Pro Stock in order to pursue a championship in the AMS Staff Leasing/TLR Pro Mod Series. Driving a supercharged Ford Mustang that was formerly raced by Pro Mod champ Mike Ashley, Coughlin won the Englishtown, N.J. round on Father's Day, recorded a career best 6.12 elapsed time at over 232 mph, and finished a solid sixth in the points standings. Now he's more convinced than ever that he made the correct choice.
"Initially, making the move from Pro Stock to Pro Mod was difficult," said Coughlin. "You can't just rev the engine and dump the clutch in a Pro Mod car because it will smoke the tires immediately. The driving technique is totally different than what I was used to in Pro Stock. After a while, I started to get the hang of it, our team began to jell and we had some success. Racing in NHRA Pro Stock was a great experience and I wouldn't trade it for anything, but I really had a blast racing Pro Mod last season."
As if the Pro Mod car wasn't enough, Coughlin and the Team Jeg's crew assembled a Jerry Haas-built Chevy Cavalier for the popular Pro Street class in mid-2005. Using a unique engine combination that features a massive 824-cid Chevy engine from Sonny Leonard Racing and a three-speed automatic transmission, Coughlin instantly became a contender in the heavily populated class. Shortly after debuting the car, Coughlin won the annual Big Dog Shootout event at Piedmont Dragway near Greensboro, N.C. After wining the race, Coughlin was presented with the $50,000 top prize.
"That win tied the biggest payday of my drag racing career," said Coughlin. "I won the Winston Showdown in Pro Stock and that was also worth $50,000. The whole weekend was really pretty thrilling. It was definitely one of the top moments of the 2005 season."
As exciting as 2005 was for Coughlin, the 2006 season arrives with even more anticipation. Coughlin plans to continue racing in Pro Mod and Pro Street, but he recently made some changes in an effort to gain a competitive advantage. The most notable change was swapping the supercharged engine in the Team Jeg's Mustang for a Pontiac GTO equipped with twin turbochargers. Turbo charging expert John Meany will join a team that already includes crew chief Bryan Metzenheim, Clint Allerton, and Coughlin's oldest son, Troy Jr., who plans to make the move from the Jr. Drag Racing League into Super Gas later this season. Troy also receives plenty of help and or advise from his daughters Meghan, Paige and Kelly.
"Between racing my two cars and helping Troy Jr. in his first year in Super Gas, I plan to stay very busy this season," said Coughlin, who plans to start the year by racing the Pro Street Car at the 4th Annual Detroit Locker NMCA Nationals in Bradenton, April 7-9th. "I can't wait to get started."