INDIANAPOLIS – Five-time Pro Stock champion Jeg Coughlin Jr. earned a little breathing room in the Mello Yello championship points standings Sunday with a solid victory at the Dodge NHRA Indy Nationals at Lucas Oil Raceway in Indianapolis. Coughlin, a veteran of 451 Pro Stock races, beat nephew Troy Coughlin Jr. in the final in what was just Troy Jr.’s second start in the category.
Entering the race just eight points ahead of Jason Line, Jeg Jr. now has a 44-point edge against his chief challenger. Jeg Jr. also stretched his advantage over teammate and reigning Pro Stock champion Erica Enders from 15 to 77 points.
“Had a helluva day with a really special ending; I couldn’t be happier,” Jeg Jr. said. “We were third-best through qualifying with Rickie (Jones, crew chief) trying a few little things Saturday, but went back to our tried-and-true set-up today and got the job done, despite not having the best car on the property today. We just worked at it and kept our heads down and here we are now with another trophy.
Total of five Team JEGS cars are entered at Lucas Oil Raceway
INDIANAPOLIS – Pro Stock points leader Jeg Coughlin Jr. is used to keeping his foot on the gas, something the six-time world champion promises to continue when drag racing returns to Lucas Oil Raceway for this weekend’s Dodge NHRA Indy Nationals, the third straight national event at the historic quarter-mile strip.
“I think we’re all coming to the realization of how quickly things can change during this pandemic,” Coughlin Jr. said. “We’ve seen races being rescheduled, postponed or even cancelled outright this year so we’re just going to treat every single one we go to like it’s the final race of the Countdown to the Championship and the title is on the line.
“Really, dating back to last year’s championship chase, Rickie (Jones, crew chief) has been very aggressive with the tune-up and the JEGS.com Elite Motorsports Chevrolet Camaro has really responded well. We finished strong last year and we’re off to an incredible start this year so there’s no reason to change our tactics.”
Coughlin powered from eighth to second place in the six races of last year’s championship charge, racing to a win and two runner-up results in the final three events. This year, he’s got a win and a runner-up in the three national events contested so far.
Makenna Brown continues to gain experience in Super Comp
TOPEKA, KS – It’s going to be another busy weekend for Team JEGS drag racers Mike Coughlin and Makenna Brown as they head to Heartland Motorsports Park for a double-header weekend of Division 5 action in the Lucas Oil Drag Racing Series.
Reigning Division 3 Top Dragster champion Mike Coughlin is fresh off an impressive runner-up result at the annual JEGS SPORTSnationals, which concluded Sunday at National Trail Raceway in Ohio. His team, led by crew chief Greg Cody, hope to help the boss go one step further in Kansas.
“That was our first race of the year and we really didn’t have any issues at all,” Coughlin said. “We got as close to a win as you can get without winning but when you run into a guy like Anthony Bertozzi you know you’re racing one of the top 2-3 racers in the world. Every once in a while, you need a little luck. It’s hard to win round after round at this level.
“The JEGS.com dragster is happy, I’m pleased with my driving, and the guys — Greg, Tony Collier, Dave Ruark and Ryan Micke — are working well together. We had an awesome start and I hope it continues. When you have a situation like this where everything is clicking it’s just so much fun to race.”
HEBRON, OH – Anthony Bertozzi, one of NHRA’s most decorated sportsman drag racers, passed another milestone Monday when he drove to the Top Dragster title during the rain-delayed final rounds at the JEGS SPORTSnationals. Bertozzi is now the most successful driver in the history of the event with five titles.
A total of 11 champions were crowned out of a starting field of more than 600 drivers who attended JEGS Speedweek at historic National Trail Raceway. In addition to Bertozzi, Chad Voges (Comp), Jeff Dona (Super Stock), Eric Campolito (Stock), Phillip Oakley (Super Comp), Dwight Nuest (Super Gas), Mark Smith (Super Street), John Benoit (Top Sportsman), and Bruce Sauer (Sportsman Motorcycle) all racked up wins.
Earlier in the weekend, Megan Meyer and D.J. Cox, each earned titles in Top Alcohol Dragster and Top Alcohol Funny Car, respectively. All of the SPORTSnationals champions received a coveted copper NHRA Wally trophy.
Bertozzi earned his 24th NHRA national event title when he defeated Team JEGS driver Mike Coughlin in the final round. Like Bertozzi, Coughlin also has experienced a tremendous amount of success in SPORTSnationals races with four previous victories. In one of the best side-by-side races of the weekend, both drivers were nearly perfect off the starting line, but the win light shone in Bertozzi’s lane after Coughlin broke out with a 6.16 on his 6.18-second prediction. Despite the loss, it was hard for Coughlin to call the weekend anything other than a success.
Saturday’s packed schedule at National Trail Raceway included qualifying and elimination rounds for Top Alcohol Dragster, Top Alcohol Funny Car, Comp, Top Dragster and Top Sportsman. Also on the docket was the opening round in Super Comp, Super Gas, and Super Street drivers, plus class eliminations for Super Stock and Stock drivers.
Reigning world champion Megan Meyer and De l Cox Jr. emerged as the respective top qualifiers in Top Alcohol Dragster and Top Alcohol Funny Car, two categories making their first SPORTSnationals appearance since 1985. Meyer drove to a 5.225-second elapsed time and also won her first-round race. She’ll be joined in the semifinals by Jackie Fricke, Mike Bucher, and Josh Hart.
Cox drove his Chevrolet Camaro Funny Car to a 5.518-second pass to lead Top Alcohol Funny Car. Like Meyer, Cox also emerged as a winner from Round 1 and is joined by two-time world champion Sean Bellemeur, Drew Hales, and Chris Foster in the final four.
HEBRON, OH – Ronnie Bohn, Michael Volkman, and Doug Duell were among the winners crowned Friday night as part of the Division 3 Lucas Oil Series event at National Trail Raceway. Bohn won in Comp Eliminator, Volkman earned the Super Stock title, and Duell won in Stock Eliminator.
The other champions crowned Friday evening included Michael Handras (Super Comp), Greg Slack (Super Gas), Robert Bauer (Super Street), Danny Nelson (Top Dragster), and Curt Fredrich (Top Sportsman).
The North Central Division Lucas Oil Series event marks the first of two races that make up JEGS Speedweek, an event that has attracted more than 600 of the nation’s best sportsman drag racers.
Bohn drove his six-cylinder powered dragster to a victory over past JEGS SPORTSnationals winner Mike Farrell in the final round of Comp. Bohn, was the No. 2 qualifier in the quick field while Farrell was sixth quickest at the start of eliminations.
HEBRON, OH – Build it and they will come. The NHRA North Central Division and JEGS Mail Order worked together to organize JEGS Speedweek, which kicked off Thursday with more than 600 of the nation’s best sportsman drag racers getting to work at National Trail Raceway.
The historic event combines the first Lucas Oil Series Division 3 race of the season with the annual JEGS.com SPORTSnationals. The Division 3 race will take place Thursday and Friday, followed by the JEGS SPORTSnationals on Saturday and Sunday.
After Thursday’s opening rounds of qualifying, Frank Affronti (Comp), Rich South (Super Stock), Gary Summers (Stock), Lester Johnson (Top Sportsman) and J.B. Strassweg (Top Dragster) lead their respective fields. Racers in Super Comp, Super Gas, Super Street, and Sportsman Motorcycle also made time trial runs in preparation for Friday’s eliminations.
Comp leader Frank Affronti – Affronti drove his Chevy Cobalt to a run of 7.337 seconds to lead the Comp Eliminator field. A finalist at the 1999 U.S. Nationals, Affronti was able to hold off Ronnie Bohn, Scott Chamness, and Greg Kamplain, who all made solid qualifying runs themselves. Defending JEGS SPORTSnationals Comp winner Terry Smith is seeded No. 10 in the field. Smith can earn the coveted JEGS Crown trophy should he prevail during Sunday’s final eliminations.