INDIANAPOLIS (Sept. 2) — The mood around “Turbo Troy” Coughlin’s Pro Mod pit was surprisingly upbeat Sunday afternoon despite the group coming up just short in its bid to make the elimination field of the 53rd annual U.S. Nationals.

Racing under brand-new rules for turbo-charged entries in the AMS Staff Leasing Pro Mod Challenge for the first time, Coughlin and crew weren’t sure what to expect coming into Indianapolis Raceway Park. In the end, the have a bunch more data than they did at the start of the weekend and their anxious to continue to tame their rocket-fast Pontiac GTO.

“We came into the race knowing we needed to increase our wheel speed down low and we accomplished that without question,” Coughlin said. “We just need to control it now and we’ll do that through chassis adjustments and utilizing different gear ratios.

“We’re doing something, or trying to do something, that no one has ever down before so every run is progress in my mind. We came here to get in the field and race for the trophy and we missed that goal. But, we did get to make some big runs down a track that is prepared to NHRA specifications for a national event. That’s what it takes to get better.”

A new rule implemented prior to this event allows for bigger motors, three-disc clutches, and manual transmissions for all turbo-charged cars competing in the class. This is the first year turbo cars have been allowed to run at all with Coughlin leading the way.

Up next for the team is the the 22nd annual O’Reilly NHRA Fall Nationals, which run from Sept. 20-23 at the Texas Motorplex near Dallas.

“This car is going to be so bad one day,” Coughlin said. “There’s no doubt in my mind about that. We need to be patient. It’s very exciting.”

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