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Jeg Coughlin Jr. reflects on ‘Bobsled Challenge’ as full-time driving career wanes

DELAWARE, OH – Six-time drag racing world champion Jeg Coughlin Jr. will always pick the familiar confines of

his JEGS.com Elite Motorsports Chevrolet Camaro as his preferred mode of go-fast transportation. But for three years, from 2008-2010, Coughlin enjoyed the unique experience of hitting breakneck speeds driving an Olympic bobsled as part of the Geoff Bodine Bobsled Challenge.

“As I think back on those three events, that was actually pretty crazy,” said Coughlin, who will pullback from full-time racing at the end of the year. “At the time, the competitor in you comes out and the way they set it up was NASCAR versus NHRA so we just kind of dove into the fight. It probably was a bit insane but it was also a lot of fun.

“You’re in these things with no roll cage, no safety belts and no brakes really, except for one the brakeman uses after the run is over. It’s all about gravity and once they release you in that tube, you’re fully committed. The sled and its occupants are going to the bottom of the mountain. How you get there is up to you. If you crash and turn it over, you’re still going all the way down, just on your head, and that happened.”

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Mr. Aruba’s Winter Nationals Bench Race & Charity Challenge breaks another record 

JEGS Foundation for Cancer Research gains $16.7K in donations

DELAWARE, OH – The 16th annual Mr. Aruba’s Winter Nationals Bench Race and Charity Challenge raised a record-breaking $16,714 for the JEGS Foundation for Cancer Research, topping the previous high-mark of funds raised at a single event by more than $3K.

“Events like this make us very proud to be a part of such a great racing community,” said Jeg Coughlin Jr., one of four brothers who own and operate JEGS Automotive and serve as caretakers of the JEGS Foundation. “It was never in our plans or our dreams for the JEGS Foundation to receive outside funds. Our goal as a family was to direct earnings from our various business efforts toward cancer research through the JEGS Foundation. The Mr. Aruba races have just been a remarkable addition to what we’ve been able to accomplish.

“We have personally witnessed so much progress through our association with The Ohio State University Comprehensive Cancer Center as well as the James Cancer Hospital and Solove Research Institute. As always, 100-percent of the money donated from this year’s Mr. Aruba’s Winter Nationals Bench Race and Charity Challenge will go to those entities.”

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When drag racing resumes, Houston event will be extra special for Jeg Coughlin Jr.

HOUSTON – The year was 1997 and when the NHRA schedule rolled around to the second Houston race of the season, which took place in late October at Houston Raceway Park, the entry list had a new name on it — Jeg Coughlin Jr. By the end of the weekend, the record books also included that name as the surprise winner of the event.

Although he was a well-respected and championship-winning driver in the Sportsman ranks, Coughlin’s late-year foray to Baytown, Texas, marked just his second start in Pro Stock. He had debuted the prior weekend in Dallas and had plans to finish the year in Pomona, Calif., but he was mainly thinking about getting a little seat time and prepping for the 1998 season.

“I’ve always had lofty expectations and goals, no matter what I was competing in,” Coughlin said. “But that weekend in Houston, so very early in my Pro Stock career, really exceeded anything I could have imagined.”

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NO LET-UP FOR RETIRING PRO STOCK LEGEND JEG COUGHLIN JR. APPROACHING AMALIE MOTOR OIL NHRA GATORNATIONALS 

GAINESVILLE, FL – There was technically an off-season for the NHRA Mello Yello Drag Racing Series between the 2019 and 2020 seasons, but it hasn’t looked like Jeg Coughlin Jr. has skipped a beat in the new year. After ending last season on a positive note, Coughlin has continued that momentum heading into this weekend’s 51st annual AMALIE Motor Oil NHRA Gatornationals at Gainesville Raceway.

He has qualified No. 1 in four of the past five races, dating back to last year, advancing to four finals and winning two races, including the final race of 2019 and the first race of 2020. After announcing the “Breaking Barriers” retirement tour as Coughlin steps away from full-time Pro Stock racing following the 2020 season, Coughlin has been rolling in his JEGS.com/Elite Motorsports Chevrolet to start the year. That includes the NHRA Winternationals win and a $75,000 shootout victory in Orlando during the off-week before Gainesville, leaving Coughlin on track for another big weekend.

“We had a hell of a Countdown in ’19, and missed the championship by just over one round of competition,” Coughlin said. “That’s nothing to dwell on. What’s exciting is we were in a lot of final rounds, we won the World Finals in Pomona, slept well and hibernated for the winter and came out and won the Winternationals. We had a little mishap in Phoenix, but we rebounded well (in Orlando). We’ll try to keep on rolling.”

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Flying high in 2020, Jeg Coughlin Jr. leads Team JEGS trio into Amalie Gatornationals 

GAINESVILLE, FL – With two wins in the first three races of the year, Jeg Coughlin Jr. arrives at this year’s 51st annual Amalie Motor Oil NHRA Gatornationals on one of the most impressive streaks of his career. He’s hoping his fast start continues at historic Gainesville Raceway, a track where he’s reached the trophy round six times in the past.

The six-time world champion will be joined in the pits by Team JEGS teammates Troy Coughlin Jr. and Makenna Brown, who are both competing in Super Comp, Makenna in the JEGS dragster usually driven by Jeg Jr.’s wife Samantha.

“We’re set for a big weekend,” Jeg Jr. said. “The Gators are always a special race, the first time the NHRA tour gets to the East Coast each year, and we’re coming in on a great run. It’s been a stellar start to the season for our JEGS.com Elite Motorsports Chevrolet Camaro and the Elite team in general. The wins are already stacking up.”

One month ago, Jeg Jr. dominated the season-opening NHRA Winternationals, posting the quickest elapsed time of every round of qualifying and eliminations enroute to his 64th Pro Stock victory. Two weeks later, he was top qualifier in Phoenix, a race won by his teammate Erica Enders.

On Sunday, Jeg Jr. won $75,000 at the inaugural World Doorslammer Nationals in Orlando, a special non-NHRA race that paid out the single biggest race day prize in class history. Another Elite Motorsports driver, Alex Laughlin, took the Pro Mod trophy at the same event.

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Jeg Coughlin Jr. bags $75K win at inaugural Drag Illustrated World Doorslammer Nat’ls

Troy Coughlin Jr. beats reigning NHRA champ Erica Enders in debut

ORLANDO – Jeg Coughlin Jr. pocketed the single biggest prize in Pro Stock history Sunday with a thrilling $75,000 win over Greg Anderson at inaugural Drag Illustrated World Doorslammer Nationals presented by Elite Motorsports. It was Coughlin’s second victory of the season in three starts.

With a big stack of cold hard cash on the line — race organizer Wes Buck paid the winners with crispy new $100 bills — Coughlin eked out a miniscule .009-second victory over his longtime rival Anderson, posting a 6.484 at 212.36 mph to Anderson’s 6.485 at 213.81 mph. He left .008 seconds ahead and kept Anderson just in his shadow.

“It’s been a helluva weekend and it’s extremely exciting to be the last one standing Sunday evening at this inaugural race,” Coughlin said. “The format of this race was very intense with just one qualifying run Friday and then three Saturday. We missed the set-up Friday and were hoping the weather would stay good for Saturday and it did, although the sun came out and made it trickier.

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Six-time champ Jeg Coughlin Jr., newbie Troy Coughlin Jr. set for Doorslammer Nat’ls

ORLANDO, FL – The Team JEGS area of the Elite Motorsports pit at this weekend’s Drag Illustrated World Doorslammer Nationals will be home to two drivers at very different places in their careers. On one side is five-time Pro Stock champion Jeg Coughlin Jr., winner of 64 NHRA national events in 449 starts. On the other is his nephew Troy Coughlin Jr., who will be competing in the factory hot rod class for the first time in his career.

“We are certainly poised for a very interesting weekend,” Jeg Jr. said. “Racing with Troy and being here for his first Pro Stock start is a special moment in our family history. We’re all expecting big things out of him and considering the success he’s had in all the other classes he’s raced, combined with the racecar Elite has prepared for him, he’s someone that could really have a big race.

“My car has been a rocket-ship since the start of the season, with a pretty aggressive win at the season opener followed by another great outing in Phoenix where we were once again top qualifier, so we’re excited about our chances also. Plus, my regular teammate Erica Enders ended up winning Phoenix so all-in-all the Elite team is on quite a roll.”

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