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Mopar to sponsor Jeg Coughlin Jr. in 2012 NHRA Pro Stock season

by Bill Cawthon on

At today’s opening of the Specialty Equipment Market Association (SEMA) show in Las Vegas, Mopar announced will add four-time NHRA Pro Stock champion Jeg Coughlin Jr. to the Team Mopar roster in 2012. Coughlin will campaign a new Mopar/ Dodge Avenger in the NHRA Full Throttle Drag Racing Series Pro Stock class.

“Jeg Jr. is a proven winner, with four Pro Stock championships on his résumé,” said Pietro Gorlier, President and CEO of Mopar. “We are thrilled to add an elite driver to Team Mopar, and we look forward to sharing in his great success at the drag strip next season.”

“I’m extremely excited to join forces with Mopar in 2012,” said Jeg Jr., the only racer in the history of the NHRA to win a national event in six different classes. “The entire Coughlin Brothers Racing team has high expectations for the 2012 season and we expect to field a premier program with our Mopar/ Dodge Avenger team, from top to bottom.”

Jeg Coughlin Jr. will join veteran racer Allen Johnson as the only two drivers in the Pro Stock class directly sponsored by Mopar.

“Adding Jeg Jr. to the Team Mopar roster is a great addition for the brand,” said Allen Johnson, driver of the Mopar Dodge Avenger. “This puts at least two very strong Mopar cars in the Pro Stock field next year, and I think it gives the brand an excellent chance of seeing a Mopar-powered driver bring home the Pro Stock championship in 2012.”

“Allen Johnson and his father Roy Johnson have a long history with Mopar and have built a highly respected program with their J&J Racing team,” said Jeg Jr. “Between our two teams, I think you’re going to see a Mopar Dodge in the winner’s circle at many NHRA events next year.

“When we pull through the gates at Pomona for the NHRA Winternationals (the 2012 season-opening event), with the lofty goals we’ve set for ourselves, we expect to have a car that can qualify on the pole and win on Sunday. I believe the Mopar/ Dodge will be able to fire some shots off the bow immediately.”

Coughlin captured the 2004 U.S. Nationals Mopar HEMI Challenge event win driving a 1968 Plymouth Barracuda, raced a Mopar HEMI-powered Dodge Pro Stock car during the 2005 NHRA season and currently owns and occasionally competes in Sportsman events in a Mopar Challenger Drag Pak.

“I have a number of firsts involving Mopar,” said Jeg Jr. “My first car was a 1983 Dodge Charger. One of my first jobs as a teenager at our JEGS business was to organize the warehouse and create space for a brand that was expanding its parts line — the Mopar Direct Connection brand.

“The passion I’ve witnessed in the folks I’ve dealt with at Mopar and Chrysler Group is second-to-none. Their enthusiasm and excitement is a big reason this program came together, and that passion is something that will fuel our team next year.”

Mopar also announced at the SEMA show in Las Vegas that it will expand longstanding relationship with Don Schumacher Racing and its sponsorship of Dodge Charger R/T Funny Car driver Matt Hagan. Mopar, along with partners Pennzoil and Magneti Marelli, will increase its presence on Hagan’s car for the entire 2012 NHRA Full Throttle Drag Racing Series.

Hagan raced with a special Mopar graphics scheme on his Dodge Charger R/T Funny Car this season at the Mopar Mile-High NHRA Nationals, qualifying third and making it to the finals of the event. He also carried the Mopar colors at the U.S. Nationals in Indianapolis, where he reached the semifinals.

“Matt Hagan is one of the best young talents on the NHRA circuit and has been a great brand ambassador for Mopar,” said Gorlier. “Mopar has enjoyed a long and successful relationship with Don Schumacher Racing, one of the elite organizations in motorsports, and we are happy to increase our sponsorship on Matt Hagan’s Dodge, and welcome partners Pennzoil and Magneti Marelli in support as well.”

Jeg Coughlin Jr. Career Highlights:
Four-time NHRA Pro Stock champ (2000, 2002, 2007, 2008)
Five-time NHRA world champ including 1992 Sportsman title in the Super Gas class (1992)
Only driver in NHRA history to win a national event in six different classes
Only driver in NHRA history to win national events in four different classes in one season (1997 – Pro Stock, Super Stock, Competition, Super Gas)
Just the tenth driver in NHRA history to claim 50 national event victories

Bill Cawthon grew up in the auto industry in the 1950s. His Dad worked for Chrysler and Bill spent a number of Saturdays down on the plant floor at Dodge Main in Hamtramck. Bill is also the U.S. market correspondent for, a British auto industry publication, and a member of the Texas Auto Writers Association, which has named the Jeep Grand Cherokee the “SUV of Texas” several times and named the Ram 1500 as the “Truck of Texas” two years running.

Bill has owned five Plymouths (including the only 1962 “Texan”), one Dodge and one Chrysler and is still trying to figure out how to justify a Wrangler. He also has owned at least one of every 1:87 scale model of a Chrysler product. You can reach him directly at (206) 888-7324 or by using the form.

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