INDIANAPOLIS (Aug. 28) — Six-time world champion Jeg Coughlin Jr. has collected a whopping eight trophies on the hallowed ground of Lucas Oil Dragway In Indianapolis. He's hoping to move that mark to nine this weekend at the 63rd annual Chevrolet Performance U.S. Nationals.
"Indy has been a home race of sorts for my family for as long as we've all been drag racing," said Coughlin, the driver of the JEGS.com/Elite Performance Chevrolet Camaro who hails from Delaware, Ohio. "Dad won there, all my brothers have won there, my nephew Troy Jr. has won there, and I've been fortunate enough to win there a number of times in a variety of cars.
"It's a place that means everything to drag racers and we're thrilled to have put the Coughlin name on some of the history that's been made there."
Coughlin has claimed five of his eight Indy victories during the historic U.S. Nationals, three times in Pro Stock (in 2000, 2002 and 2009), once in Super Gas (1992) and once during the 2004 Mopar Hemi Challenge, a special race-within-a-race contested each year during "the Big Go."
Further, Coughlin won at the facility during Division 3 races in 1992 (Super Gas) and 1997 (Comp). He also won the grueling 10-round JEGS US Open bracket race in a Super Pro car in 2008.
"The Super Gas win in 1992 was huge, definitely my biggest win as a Sportsman racer," Coughlin said. "I was a young kid, got lucky and won eight rounds, beating perennial heavyweight Sherman Adcock in the final. Sherman and I have become great racing friends since but it all started that day.
"The Pro Stock win in 2000 was historic in that we won from the 16th qualifying spot, which had never been done before. We were struggling in qualifying and the last session was brutal because after we ran there were still like three or four pairs of cars that could have knocked us out. But we stayed in, came to life on race day, and won the race."
Racing alongside his wife Samantha, who will be competing in Super Gas, his brother Troy (Pro Mod) and his nephew Troy Jr. (Super Comp), Coughlin says bagging his 10th Indy win this time through would be epic.
"I'd love nothing more than to shake off the remaining cobwebs we have in the JEGS.com/Elite Camaro and make a big move in Indy," Coughlin said. "It's been a season of peaks and valleys, with a lot of time in the valley of late, but everyone has been working around the clock since Brainerd to get these cars sorted out.
"Driving both my car and her own car, my teammate Erica Enders made more than 50 passes last week in testing and we're both going to St. Louis Tuesday and Wednesday to make some more laps. We're all anxious to regain the form we had earlier this year when we were qualifying No. 1 and going to final rounds."
Pro Stock drivers can make five qualifying runs, beginning at 7:15 p.m., Friday. There will be two more sessions at 2:30 and 6:15 p.m., Saturday, and another two at 11:30 a.m. and 3:15 p.m., Sunday. Eliminations are slated to start at noon, Monday.
FOX Sports 1 will air live qualifying from 12-2 p.m. and 5-7 p.m., Sunday, and the first round of eliminations live from 11 a.m.-1 p.m., Monday. The main FOX Network takes over from there, airing the remainder of eliminations live from 1-4 p.m., Monday. (All times are local and subject to change.)