As has been his custom the past few years, Coughlin will arrive in Seattle early to enjoy some vacation time with his 12-year-old son Jeggie III. Boating, fishing, golfing, and sightseeing are all on the agenda, and Coughlin Jr. knows the down time can pay big dividends on the racetrack.
“We’re in a crucial time of the season and we want to be in top form from now until the Countdown starts so we can maintain our No. 1 ranking and get the bonus points for the run to the championship,” said Coughlin, the first professional in any class to secure a playoff berth. “There’s a couple of teams breathing down are necks and we’d love to win a few more races between now and Charlotte to help hold them off.
“Finding time to relax and get away from racing can really give you a lift and there’s no better place in the country to recharge than the Pacific Northwest. It’s so beautiful up here and me and Jeggie love to do things outdoors so it’s a perfect time to visit one of our favorite cities in the world.”
Coughlin has led the Pro Stock points for the last nine races. His NHRA-leading five national event victories in the first 13 races of the year have yielded a 35-8 race day record, the best in the professional ranks.
Although he counts Pacific Raceways as one of his favorite racetracks on the circuit, just one of Coughlin’s 59 national event wins has come at the facility, tucked away near the base of Mount Rainier. He took home the trophy in 2002, one of four seasons where he went on to win the NHRA championship. Coughlin also was runner-up there in 2000.
“We go straight from Denver to Seattle so you go from a mile high to sea level in one week’s time,” said the 39-year-old from Delaware, Ohio. “It’s always a real kick in the pants, literally, when you drop the clutch for the first time in Seattle and you have all your horsepower back. You get to feel that acceleration again and it’s exciting.
“I’m very comfortable at the facility and the city and that plays into my driving. We’re ready to go up there and win another race.”