MEMPHIS, Tenn. (Oct. 5) — In all likelihood, Troy Coughlin’s inaugural season in the Edelbrock Drag Racing Series will end with a very respectable runner-up finish in the Denso Pro Street championship standings. But there is still one event left on the seven-race schedule and until it’s mathematically impossible for Coughlin to catch points leader Vinny Budano, he’ll be racing as hard as he can in his JEGS Mail Order Chevrolet Cavalier.

“We’ll approach this race like we have a chance to win the title because we still do,” Coughlin said. “Vinny and that group have done a great job but I’m very proud of the way we’ve pushed them to be better, especially considering this was our first full year racing in the NMCA.

“Maybe they’ll win the championship but the title of the race could very well be ours and we’re going to do whatever we can to win it. The way the last few races have gone we could see Vinny in the finals again.”

The season-ending fifth annual Nitto Tire NMCA World Finals at Memphis Motorsports Park will begin with Coughlin 555 points off the lead. The most a competitor could earn in a single weekend is 690 points, meaning Budano would need to be eliminated in the opening round for Coughlin to have a chance at catching him. Budano, the defending series champion, has advanced at least three rounds at every race this year.

“It’s been a great run and the most important thing is we’ve had a lot of fun,” Coughlin said. “I backed out of NHRA racing because the schedule was too demanding. My kids are in that age group were they have a lot going on and they’re the most important thing to me so we needed to do something that allowed me to race but not be gone 23 weekends a year. This was a perfect fit.”

Coughlin, a veteran drag racer who rose to fame in the NHRA’s Pro Stock category, has three-runner-up finishes to his credit this season in Pro Street.

“The coolest thing is my kids were able to join me several times this year,” Coughlin said. “The racing is very serious over here but it’s more down home fun between rounds and everyone is more relaxed. It was my pleasure to race and the fact my team gave me a great racecar only made it better.”

Qualifying begins Friday with eliminations running Sunday.

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