“We’ve had a great racecar every weekend,” Coughlin said. “It’s a real credit to the guys. Our crew chief, Rickie Smith, joined the team this year and his experience in this class is better than most. Even when we had races where the qualifying was shortened by rain, Rickie found a tune-up to get us in the show.
“The key now is to continue our qualifying streak, and then carry that momentum into race day and get this JEGS.com Chevrolet Camaro into the winner’s circle. I can’t think of a better place to do that than Indianapolis.”
Coughlin’s yellow and black Camaro will look the same when he unloads for Round 1 on Friday afternoon, but under the body work are quite a few new pieces. I recent test session in Norwalk, Ohio, ended with a broken driveshaft that tore through the racecar.
“I’d never seen so much carnage in my life,” said Coughlin, who fortunately was uninjured in the mishap. “It made quite a mess. The driveshaft came loose and busted up the back of the car pretty well and then pieces of it came into the driver’s compartment and just ripped it up in there. It was a scary deal.
“After we collected ourselves we immediately loaded the car up and headed to (car builder) Jerry Bickel’s race shop. We were on the phone to him explaining what had happened and what needed to be done and he had his crew ready for us when we arrived. They worked on that car until it looked brand new again and made sure we would be ready to race again. Those guys are first rate.”
Just to make sure everything was working properly, the team had another test in Rockingham, N.C.
“The car was perfect; smooth as glass every run,” Coughlin said. “In hindsight, it’s good the driveshaft broke in testing rather than at Indy. We basically have a new car again and it’s running great. We’re really excited about Indy and challenging for the trophy.”
The first round of qualifying in the Get Screened America Pro Mod Drag Racing Series will take place at 4:30 p.m. at Indianapolis Raceway Park.
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