HOUSTON (April 1) – Pro Stock driver Jeg Coughlin Jr. thundered up to fourth place in the POWERade championship points with a strong semifinal showing at the 20th annual Spring Nationals at Houston Raceway Park.

The 36-year-old from Delaware, Ohio, emerged from the No. 1 qualifying position and raced past Kenny Koretsky and Greg Stanfield before bowing out to reigning series champion Jason Line by three-hundredths of a second.

Coughlin got a gargantuan headstart against Line, leaving the starting line with a fantastic .019-second reaction time, a full four hundredths of a second ahead of Line, but his Slammers Ultimate Milk Chevrolet Cobalt spun its tires severely on the launching pad. The momentary loss of traction allowed Line to sneak past for the win, 6.687 to 6.760.

“All in all this was a fantastic weekend,” Coughlin said. “We got our first No. 1 qualifier of the year and we went from seventh to fourth in the points in one event so that’s exciting. I’m really pleased with how this car is running right now.

“I’m excited with my teammate Dave Connolly also. He’s third in the points now so we have both of Victor Cagnazzi’s cars right up at the top of the standings. The only guys ahead of us are Greg [Anderson] and Jason and they’ve won the last four championships. Our goal was to try our best to run with them and we’re right there.”

The NHRA tour takes one weekend off before heading to Las Vegas April 13-15.

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