CHANDLER, Ariz. (February 18, 2020) – Everything seems to be going perfectly well for six-time NHRA champion Jeg Coughlin Jr. at the moment and in a sport where luck can change as easily as the breeze, the 49-year-old from Columbus, Ohio, is anxious to ride his current wave of good fortune for as long as possible.
Consider the facts entering this weekend’s NHRA Arizona Nationals:
- After just one race, Coughlin leads Pro Stock by 36 points, the largest margin in any professional category.
- His JEGS.com Elite Motorsports Chevrolet Camaro was quickest of all eight rounds in Pomona, Calif., including qualifying and eliminations.
- He was the No. 1 qualifier in Pomona.
- Dating back to last year, Coughlin has won two national events in a row and has been to four straight finals. His won/loss elimination-round record during this span is 14-2.
- He’s visited the winner’s circle at Wild Horse Pass Motorsports Park five times in the past, including last year’s national event.
“We seem to be checking off all the boxes,” Coughlin said. “We’ve taken rides on the momentum train in the past, both on the good side and the bad side, and although our confidence is sky-high at the moment, we know you have to stay after it with everything you’ve got to keep it going. So we’re still going after the jugular this weekend.
“We’re feeling great about Pomona. We’re excited about the last several races we’ve had, going back to the start of last year’s playoffs, and of course coming to a track where we’ve had so much success in the past doesn’t hurt either.”
Coughlin began winning in Phoenix all the way back in 1995 when he claimed the Super Stock title in his JEGS-branded hot rod. He returned two years later for a Division 7 race and won in the Competition eliminator category.
He’s also gathered three of his 63 Pro Stock wins at Wild Horse Pass Motorsports Park, including victories in 2000, 2009 and 2019.
“Last year was memorable because it was early in the season and really gave us a boost,” Coughlin said. “I also clearly remember the winner’s circle party we had in 2009 as I had a bunch of old college buddies here that weekend as well as my friends from the rock band O.A.R. It’s always special when you win, but it’s extra special with friends and family on hand.
“For the last few years we’ve had some regular season successes but we’ve found a way to dig deep and really make a couple of strong runs in the playoffs. This year, Rickie (Jones, crew chief) decided we were just going to race very aggressively right from the start. So really we’re just continuing the mindset from last year’s Countdown the Championship where we came from eighth place to within 21 points of another title.”
Pro Stock qualifying sessions are slated for 1:45 and 4:45 p.m., Friday, and 1 and 4 p.m., Saturday. Eliminations begin at noon. (All listed times are local).
Jeg Coughlin Jr. Fast Facts for Phoenix
NHRA Arizona Nationals
Wild Horse Pass Motorsports Park
Phoenix (Feb. 21-23)
The JEGS Mail Order team will be represented at this weekend’s NHRA Arizona Nationals by Pro Stock driver Jeg Coughlin Jr., the current points leader.
Two weeks ago in Pomona, Calif., Jeg Jr. began his pursuit of a sixth NHRA Mello Yello Drag Racing Series Pro Stock title (and seventh championship overall) with a victory at the 60th annual NHRA Winternationals.
Jeg Jr. is racing as a member of Elite Motorsports. His Chevy Camaro carries the familiar yellow and black colors of JEGS Mail Order along with the special-edition JEGS 60th anniversary logo.
Last year, Jeg Jr. finished as the No. 2 ranked driver in the Pro Stock class behind Elite teammate Erica Enders. It was the second-straight year he’s been the championship runner-up. Jeg Jr. has now finished in the top 10 on 19 occasions in his professional career, which began in 1997.
Jeg Jr. has announced 2020 as his last full-time season in professional drag racing. Coughlin’s final campaign is dubbed the “Breaking Barriers Tour,” in reference to his many racing accomplishments.
Jeg Jr. will continue racing as a teammate to three-time champion Erica Enders. The Elite Motorsports team also includes Alex Laughlin, Aaron Stanfield, and Marty Robertson, who is making his Pro Stock debut this season. Jeg Jr.’s crew chief is Rickie Jones, who has extensive experience in the class as a driver, chassis builder and tuner. The Elite team also features crew chiefs Rick Jones, Mark Ingersoll and Brian “Lump” Self. The crew chiefs regularly share data.
Jeg Jr. has won at least one national event at 24 different facilities, including Wild Horse Pass Motorsports Park. The only current stops on the NHRA Mello Yello Drag Racing Series tour where he has not won are the races in Norwalk, Ohio, and Epping, N.H.
In Pomona, Jeg Jr. qualified No. 1 and went to the final round, where he defeated Jason Line. Jeg Jr. also had low elapsed time of each qualifying and elimination round. He scored 130 points, the maximum points available under the current NHRA scoring system.
During his career, Jeg Jr. has won the Pro Stock title three times in Phoenix. He claimed his first win in 2000 by beating Mark Pawuk in the final round and stopped Kurt Johnson to win his second title in 2009. Last year, he added a third win when he stopped Matt Hartford in the final.
As a sportsman driver, Jeg Jr. also won two more Phoenix titles. He earned the Super Stock title in 1995 and returned in 1997 to claim the Comp title at the track’s Division 7 Lucas Oil Series event.
In 19 previous appearances at Wild Horse Pass Motorsports Park, Jeg Jr. has a won-loss record of 27-16 in Pro Stock competition.
In his 19 appearances in Phoenix, Jeg Jr. has qualified in the top half of the field 12 times including a best of No. 3 in 2004.
Jeg Jr. is a five-time NHRA Pro Stock champion. He earned season titles in 2000, 2002, 2007-2008 and 2013. As a sportsman driver, Jeg Jr. also claimed the NHRA Super Gas championship in 1992.
Jeg Jr. is the only driver to win national event titles in seven different categories. He has won in Pro Stock, Comp, Super Stock, Stock, Super Comp, Super Gas and Top Dragster.
Jeg Jr. is the only professional racer in history to win a national event title from all 16 starting spots. During his Indy win in 2000, Jeg qualified No. 16.
With 64 Pro Stock wins, Jeg Jr. ranks fourth all-time among Pro Stock drivers. Only Warren Johnson (97), Greg Anderson (94), and the late Bob Glidden (85) have more titles.
In 448 career Pro Stock races, Jeg Jr. has reached the final round 112 times, recording 64 wins. Including his 19 sportsman victories, Jeg Jr. has won a total of 83 times. Jeg Jr. has appeared in 137 final rounds, 112 as a professional and 25 as a sportsman racer.
During his Pro Stock career, Jeg Jr. has competed in 448 events and has a round-win record of 675-368. He has failed to qualify just 16 times.
Jeg Jr. has been the low qualifier 33 times in Pro Stock including the Pomona season-opener this year.
Overall, the Coughlin family, including John, Troy, Mike, Jeg Jr. and Troy Jr. have combined for 126 NHRA national event victories since 1990. The Coughlin’s have won in 11 different eliminators including Pro Stock, Pro Stock Truck, Pro Mod, Top Alcohol Dragster, Comp, Super Stock, Stock, Super Comp, Super Gas, Top Sportsman and Top Dragster.
TEAM JEGS – By the Numbers
3: Pro Stock victories in Phoenix for Jeg Jr.
7: Different classes where Jeg Jr. has won at least one NHRA national event title (the only driver in history to do so)
11: Number of classes where the Coughlin family has earned an NHRA national event victory
19: Top-10 finishes for Jeg Jr. in the Pro Stock class since 1998
126: Combined NHRA national event victories for the Coughlin family
130: Points scored by Jeg Jr. in Pomona, the maximum available at the event.
About JEGS Automotive, Inc.
JEGS Automotive is a worldwide e-commerce leader in the mail-order, high-performance auto parts business, offering more than 1M individual items for purchase. Founded in 1960 by drag racing legend Jeg Coughlin Sr., JEGS remains family-owned to this day with brothers John, Troy Sr., Mike and Jeg Jr. in charge. The company’s corporate headquarters, massive 225,000-square-foot warehouse and distribution center, state-of-the-art call centers, the family’s classic car and truck collection, Team JEGS’ research and development facility and the offices of the JEGS Foundation are all located in Delaware, Ohio. For more information, call 800-345-4545 or visit www.JEGS.com.
About Team JEGS
Team JEGS, the official racing team of JEGS Automotive, is fueled by the legacy of one of the most successful families in motorsports history, the Coughlins. Led by JEGS founder and International Drag Racing Hall of Fame member Jeg Coughlin Sr. and his four sons — John, Troy Sr., Mike and Jeg Jr. — Team JEGS has claimed nine NHRA World Championships, 18 divisional championships and 125 national event victories. Meet the drivers, view the race schedule and keep up with the latest news and results at www.TeamJEGS.com.