“We’re really happy with the car at the moment,” Coughlin said. “It would have been nice to be a couple of spots higher on the grid but everyone is packed in there so tightly that it really doesn’t seem to be that big of a deal. It’s a regular Pro Stock field — you got 16 great racecars that are all fully capable of winning this race, including us.”
The No. 8 starting position has been very kind to Coughlin so far this year. He was the No. 8 qualifier in both Las Vegas and St. Louis and went on to win both events. Currently, his four national event victories leads Pro Stock and ties him for the overall NHRA lead with Funny Car point leader Ron Capps.
“We’ve had a heckuva start to the season and now that we’re hitting the middle part of the year we really want to continue our performance and keep winning races,” Coughlin said. “I believe it’s a realistic goal for us to start thinking about earning the No. 1 spot for the playoffs. It’s going to take some incredible racing and lots of hard work but this team has proven they have what it takes many times before.”
The 38-year-old Coughlin is a two-time winner at the SuperNationals, having won here in 2000 and 2002. He went on to win the world championship in both of those seasons. Overall, Coughlin has five world titles and 58 national event wins to his credit, placing him in the all-time top 10.
As the No. 8 qualifier, Coughlin will open elimination action against ninth-place Jason Line, who qualified with a 6.629 at 208.88 mph. Coughlin and Line have raced four times this year with Coughlin a perfect 4-0 against Line.
“We love E-town,” Coughlin said. “These fans here are so into Pro Stock and that makes it very special for the drivers in our class. The two times we won here in the past we went on to win the title so winning another trophy here would be a great omen.
“I know we’ll be ready to go and we’re excited to race.”
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