TOPEKA, Kan. (June 2) — Jeg Coughlin Jr. looked exactly like a three-time series champion Saturday at Heartland Park Topeka, taking his familiar yellow-and-black Chevrolet Cobalt down the quarter-mile with two excellent passes that placed the two-time Topeka winner fourth on the elimination ladder.

Coughlin is sporting a new look this weekend — — but it’s one that’s served him well in the past. Wearing JEGS Mail Order colors, Coughlin has won 47 national events and three world championships. He started the year and his tenure at Victor Cagnazzi Racing with JEGS stickers in an associate sponsor position. But his family’s company recently assumed title sponsorship role.

“It’s great to be back with on the car,” Coughlin said. “It just feels right and I know the 400 employees we have standing behind us are as thrilled as we are. Maybe now we can get back in the winner’s circle and put JEGS back on top.”

Coughlin’s car ran two very consistent passes Saturday, as he opened with a 6.726 at 205.01 mph and followed that with a 6.736 at 204.79 mph. His fourth place positioning sets up a first-round date with six-time NHRA champion and longtime foil Warren Johnson, who made just one good run this weekend to qualify 13th overall.

“Everyone’s had their hands full with this racetrack,” Coughlin said. “It’s very touchy and, believe me, the crew chiefs are earning their pay out there because one slight move with the tune-up in either direction can spell trouble.

“As a driver, you always strive to be perfect but you really put in that extra effort when you have a tough racetrack because you want to remove as many variables from the equation as possible. Right now we all seem to be clicking together well.”

Eliminations begin at 11 a.m. CDT with Pro Stock schedule to hit the strip at noon. Coughlin is currently third in the world rankings, 15 points behind second-place points earner Dave Connolly, his teammate at Victor Cagnazzi Racing.

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