The “fight” in a man can reveal true character. The resiliency of Cody Coughlin and Team JEGS was tested several times over Sunday at Columbus Motor Speedway in Ohio. Not once did they back down. Their “fight” turned out a seventh place performance, which was impressive after having to go to the rear of the field early in the Bud St. Amant Memorial 125 for the ARCA / CRA Super Series.
The 19 year-old was fast in practice and found himself in the top-five early in the race after starting eighth. That’s when the test of character began.
Contact from another competitor forced Coughlin to pit road near the one-third mark in the race. After making repairs to the No. 1 JEGS Toyota Camry, the Delaware, Ohio native rejoined the field at the rear. Methodically, he picked off spots in traffic and with 25-laps to go, the Joe Gibbs Development Driver found himself 7th.
There was another challenge that lied ahead. The gap between he and sixth was significant and by the time the caution he needed came to fruition, the sun had baked a glaze over the 4/10′s of a mile track and frozen the advancement of most competitors.
Coughlin and his team never wavered in their effort, which resulted in a seventh place finish.
“Track position is everything at racetracks like this and we lost it after having to come to pit road to fix the car,” said Coughlin. “We fought hard, but by the time I got within striking distance the track lost all grip and we were all just hanging on.
“It’s tough because I know we could have won this one, but my guys (Team Manager Kevin Hamlin, crew chief Nick Easton, spotter Scott Wimmer and crew-member Dave Holt) never backed down. They made changes to the car that helped, but the car lost grip under these conditions.”
Coughlin’s sister, Kennedi, was the honorary starter for the Bud St. Amant Memorial. She threw the green flag to begin the race.
“It was really cool to have her do that. It was really nice to have her, my mom (Di) and dad (John), plus my grandfather (Jeg Sr.) here at the track today. So many family members, friends and employees from JEGS came out to support us and I really appreciate that.”
Cody Coughlin will now travel to Indianapolis, Indiana in just a couple weeks for another Super Late Model race. He will compete in the “Fall Brawl” at Lucas Oil Raceway on September 26-27 with the ARCA / CRA Super Series.
For more information on Cody Coughlin and Team JEGS, visit www.teamjegs.com and follow Cody on Twitter, @cody_coughlin. You can also follow Team JEGS on Twitter, @TeamJEGS and “Like” JEGS Performance on Facebook.