NHRA POWERade Drag Racing Series
NHRA Lucas Oil Nationals
Brainerd International Raceway
Brainerd, Minn.

Team JEG’S – Pro Stock
Jeg Coughlin, Jr
Race Day Summary

Pro Stock powerhouse Jeg Coughlin’s bid for a third victory in the Gopher State came to a halt in the quarterfinal round of eliminations of the 23rd annual Lucas Oil NHRA Nationals when he lost to runaway POWERade points leader Greg Anderson by three-hundredths of a second. It was the third consecutive loss for the Jeg’s Mail Order camp at the hands of KB Racing drivers.

“Those two cars over there are pretty damn tough,” said Coughlin, who lost at the last two events against Anderson’s teammate Jason Line. “But both of those guys are ahead of us in the points so they’re the guys I want to race. You always want to take on the top dog, and right now that’s Greg. He’s having his time at the top. Hopefully, we’ll be back there ourselves pretty soon. I feel confident we will.”

Coughlin has had two long stints in the frontrunner position since turning professional in 1997. His first run came in 2000 when his 10 victories in 14 final-round showings kept him on top of the Pro Stock world for the entire season. It was the last wire-to-wire job in class history. The 34-year-old’s second reign began after his Brainerd win in 2002, when he won seven races down the stretch to score his second world title.

“We know what it takes to run at the top,” Coughlin said. “We need more horsepower, plain and simple. Right now we’re one or two mph behind the leaders so that tells me we need more horses. That’s what this entire Jeg’s Mail Order team is working towards. We know you don’t just wave a magic wand over your car.

“We’ll have two new motors put together by Memphis. We’re working on some news things with our cylinder heads and we’re anxious to see if it’ll pay off. Horsepower is pretty much made in the heads and the manifold and we never stop looking for ways to improve our program in both of those areas.”

Coughlin had enough power Sunday to put away first-round foe Ron Krisher, posting a 6.836-second pass at 201.76 mph to Krisher’s 6.872 at 202.00 mph. Unfortunately, the electronic gremlin that visited the Jeg’s camp in Round 3 of qualifying, which resulted in the onboard computer recording no data, struck again against Krisher and team mechanics had to do some extensive guessing to figure out a tune-up for Sunday’s quarterfinals. In the end, Anderson’s 6.782 at 203.98 mph was just too much for Coughlin’s 6.812 at 202.30 mph.

“No excuses,” Coughlin said, “but we will have this old Chevy completely rewired before Memphis, I guarantee you that. We’re not sure what happened and the Racepak guys have gone over this thing top to bottom. It’s just one of those things. Bottom line, we’ll be ready for Memphis.”

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