DELAWARE, Ohio (Feb. 15) — Halfway through the prestigious 45th annual World Series of Asphalt Stock Car Racing, 15-year-old Late Model Stock Car racer Cody Coughlin is finding his groove at New Smyrna Speedway among a packed field of experienced drivers, many of which are more than twice his age.

The son of drag racing champion John Coughlin, one of four brothers that own and operate JEGS High Performance Mail Order, Cody has completed three of six races and is getting better each time out in his Chevrolet Impala.

“I’ve been having a lot of fun and learning so much,” said Cody, a past champion in the Heavy Mod division of USAC’s .25-midget class. “Each time out I’m improving so it’s been a great experience so far.”

Despite his limited time in a Late Model Stock Car — he ran a part-time schedule of just four races in the class in 2010 — Cody has driven well, expertly avoiding the seemingly prerequisite pile-ups that always seem to occur in short-track racing.

“Learning how to drive in traffic and avoid trouble has been the biggest thing for me,” Cody said. “Landon (2008 NASCAR Nationwide Series Raybestos Rookie of the Year Landon Cassill) has been a big help in coaching me on what to do in certain situations. I’m really happy he’s here with us this week.

“Working with our new crew chief Rich (Lushes) also has been great. We communicate really well with one another, and I think that’s a very important part of racing at this level.”

When not behind the wheel of his hot rod, Cody has enjoyed the atmosphere surrounding arguably the biggest short track race of the season.

“I’ve met Ted Christopher, Andy Petree, Gary Blue, and David Green,” Cody said. “It’s been great. Like I said, I’m having fun and that’s the most important thing. Hopefully we’ll get on the podium before the week is over. Then it’s off to the Daytona 500.”

The World Series of Asphalt Stock Car Racing concludes Saturday. This season, Cody will compete in the 12-race JEGS Champions Racing Association All-Star Tour presented by GM Performance Parts.


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