When you’ve won five championships, it becomes pretty tough to top what you’ve done in the past.
Doug Coby did just that in 2019.
Not only did Coby move to second all-time in terms of championships with six, he had perhaps his most complete season as a racer in the process.
Coby’s average finish of 4.6 is the best of his career. He also won eight poles, the second-most he’s had in any given season. Tack on the 15 top-10s in 16 starts, and you’ve got
It’s clear Coby will savor this title as much as any he’s won. He knows how fleeting success can be in racing.
“This could be it,” Coby said. “I always try to remember that my last win could be my last win. My last championship could be my last championship because nothing is given in this sport. Well earned by my team.”
There were several moments this season where it looked as if the season could turn sour for Coby, most notably his dominant effort at Stafford back in August that came up short thanks to a late yellow.
No matter. Coby promptly won at Thompson less than two weeks later, a statement that the 2019 championship was firmly in his control.
Even in Sunday’s World Series 150, Coby had to overcome obstacles not of his own doing. A flat left rear sent Coby to pit road early in the going, putting him outside the top-25 and out of the championship lead.
The 40-year-old worked his way through the field steadily and carefully, taking his time to get through the treacherous middle of the pack. Around 45 laps later, Coby was back in position to lock up the title. That’s where he would hover the rest of the race.
“I got great runs on the bottom off of [turn] four all day, and honestly, that’s the safest spot to be on the racetrack, is cruising by people on the bottom,” Coby said. “They’re giving you room. For a while, when I got up to like 13th, 14th, it was pretty easy pickings.”
Next year, Coby will have the chance to tie the late Mike Stefanik should he win a seventh Tour title. He’s not thinking that far ahead, however.
“I don’t really want to talk about it,” Coby said. “Talk about it when it happens. I think I was good friends with Mike. I think Mike respected me as a young, up-and-coming driver… I knew Mike well enough to know that he would be appreciative of the opportunity for me to even do that.”
Once again, Doug Coby did what Doug Coby does best: battle through the trouble and salvage the day. And with the way he’s racing, it wouldn’t be a surprise to anybody if he’s back at the World Series next October hoisting another trophy.