Super star drag racer Jeg Coughlin Jr. has spent the last three-plus decades building a resume few will ever match. His six world championships, 80-plus national event victories and unprecedented wins in a remarkable seven different eliminator categories already makes him a first-ballot Hall-of-Famer, and yet as he turns 50, Coughlin shows no signs of slowing down.
For the second time in as many years, Coughlin finished a close second in the Mello Yello championship points in Pro Stock in 2019, most recently to his Elite Motorsports teammate Erica Enders, proving he still has his championship chops. He remains one of the most prolific reaction-time specialists in the sport and with nothing changing in the new decade ahead, there's no reason to think his competitiveness will waver.
Following the path of his legendary father Jeg Coughlin Sr. into the sport, Jeg Jr. proved to be a natural from an early age. His first win came in 1990 and he quickly followed that occasion with the 1992 Super Gas world championship. For the next five years Jeg Jr. became known for winning in any class he entered, and he has the hardware from numerous Super Gas, Super Pro, Super Stock and Comp wins to prove the point.
Towards the end of 1997, having already won races that year in Super Stock, Super Gas and Comp, Jeg Jr. turned Pro and to no one's surprise, won the second race he entered.
After securing Rookie of the Year honors the following season, Jeg Jr. only needed two more years to capture his first Pro Stock championship in 2000. By then, he was virtually unstoppable, winning races by the bunches and four more championships in 2002, 2007-08 and 2013.
At this point, Jeg Jr.'s accolades have piled so high it's hard to keep up. He's already amongst the top 10 in races won, is the only Pro driver in history to have won a national event from all 16 starting spots, and still finds time to collect big cash prizes at many of the top bracket races around the country.
What's truly impressive about Jeg Jr. is that he's amassed all of his racing honors while remaining an integral piece of one of the largest mail-order high-performance parts companies in the world. Along with brothers John, Troy Sr. and Mike, the second generation of Coughlins have taken their father's speed shop and wholesale business to incredible heights in the 30 years since they purchased the business. JEGS Mail Order now ships nearly two million orders a year to over 90 countries, all with a near-perfect customer satisfaction rating.
When she's not chasing their 5-year-old daughter Carly around their home in Delaware, Ohio, Jeg Jr.'s wife Samantha also drag races, running the occasional race in Super Comp, Super Gas and bracket racing. Like her husband, Samantha has won at the national level. Meanwhile, Jeg Jr.'s son Jeg III is a burgeoning pro golfer who has sharpened his skills as a member of the Ohio State University golf team. Now in his senior year Jeg III plans to attend PGA qualifying schools in China and Canada.