BELLE ROSE, La. – Brothers Troy and Jeg Coughlin successfully completed qualifying runs on Friday at the third annual NHRA Cajun SPORTSnationals in Belle Rose, La. Troy is the current qualifying leader in the Top Sportsman division while Jeg is solidly in the field in both the Top Dragster class and the Mopar Hemi Challenge.

Driving his JEG’S Mail Order Chevy Cavalier, Troy recorded a 6.61 elapsed time at over 209-mph, one of the quickest and fastest runs ever recorded in NHRA Top Sportsman racing. Coughlin currently leads No. 2 qualifier Greg Lair by more than three tenths of a second.

“I haven’t raced in Top Sportsman for awhile and I had forgotten how much fun this class really is,” said Coughlin. “Coming into this race, You always want to do well, but you’re never quite sure until you actually start racing. Now, we need to concentrate on keeping the car consistent, and hopefully winning some rounds on race day.”

In qualifying for the Mopar Hemi Challenge event, Jeg Coughlin is currently seeded third after driving Michael Ogburn’s West Coast Hemis Barracuda to an 8.69 elapsed time. Coughlin, the winner of the recent Mopars at the Strip event in Las Vegas, is slightly off the pace set by reigning Hemi Challenge champion Charlie Westcott, who is the leader with a run of 8.67-seconds. Coughlin’s West Coast Hemis teammates Jerry Jenkins and Michael Ogburn are qualified seventh and eighth, respectively. With the help of his crew chief, 73-year old Super Stock veteran Harry Holton, Coughlin believes all three drivers will be able to contend for the title.

“No one has more experience with these cars than Harry and I think he’s got a good handle on our tune-up,” said Coughlin. “All three of us made nice runs today and I think we’re in good shape for eliminations tomorrow.”

Jeg is also qualified solidly in the Top Dragster field after driving his JEG’S Mail Order dragster to a 7.44 run at over 180-mph. After two runs, Coughlin is seeded 21st in the 32-car field. Freddie Sandrock of Bay St. Louis, Miss., is the current leader in Top Dragster with a 6.80-second run.

Final eliminations for the Mopar Hemi Challenge, which will pay $5,000 to the winner, will be held tomorrow during Super Stock class eliminations. Top Sportsman and Top Dragster competitors will continue qualifying tomorrow in preparation for Sunday’s final eliminations.


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