ATLANTA (April 25) — A pair of solid runs down Atlanta Dragway has earned reigning Pro Stock world champion Jeg Coughlin Jr. a safe mid-field spot in this weekend’s POWERade Drag Racing Series event. Coughlin opened with a 6.671 at 206.92 mph Friday afternoon before improving to a 6.668 at 206.67 mph in the slightly cooler evening to earn the No. 8 position in the provisional field.

“We’re happy to be in the field but I don’t think we scored the exact run we’re looking for just yet with old yeller,” Coughlin said, referring to his Chevrolet Cobalt. “We were in the left lane in Q2 and it doesn’t appear to be as quick as the right, judging by the numbers everyone else posted. Even so, we still feel like we should have run quicker.”

Coughlin and the other qualified drivers were relieved to have earned a spot in Day 1 as local weather forecaster paint a gloomy picture for the weekend.

“You do feel an added sense of urgency when you hear everyone talking about rain coming in,” Coughlin said. “It would be a long night if you weren’t in the show because there is always the possibility that we get rained out tomorrow.

“On the other hand, if it gets cloudy and the barometer starts going up, we could have the session of the weekend tomorrow morning. The bottom line, no matter what conditions we encounter, we need to be able to improve in relation to the other cars, even if we don’t improve our position.”

For the first time this year, Coughlin was joined in the pits and on the racetrack by his Victor Cagnazzi Racing teammate Dave Connolly, who signed Charter Communications and LifeLock as primary marketing partners.

“It’s great to have Dave back with his new colors and new sponsors,” Coughlin said. “It’s the same team as last year and certainly it worked out well going to battle each week with that group over there sharing their data with us. Two cars are always better than one and now they’re back for the long term, which is great.”

Saturday’s final two qualifying sessions are scheduled for 11:30 a.m. and 2:30 p.m.

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