TORRENCE GAINS MORE GROUND AT MILE-HIGH NATIONALS
Capco Contractors Driver Moves to Fifth in Points; Sets Track Speed Record
July 20, 2014 -- Steve Torrence checked a couple of items off his “to do” list at Bandimere Speedway, but a winners’ circle appearance wasn’t one of them as the talented Texan bowed out of the 35th annual Mopar Mile-High Nationals in one of Sunday’s closest races regardless of category.
Despite losing his second round race by a scant .008 of a second (his 3.946 trumped by J.R. Todd’s 3.938), Torrence moved from sixth to fifth in Mello Yello points.
More important, the Top Fuel title contender knows he is taking a “bad fast” Capco Contractors dragster into this week’s second stop on the critical Western Swing, the three-races-in-three-weeks stretch that precedes the NHRA’s Countdown to the Championship playoffs.
In six trips down the 1,000 foot course at Bandimere, Torrence was quickest three times, second quickest twice and third quickest once. Moreover, he left Sunday with a track speed record of 322.96 miles per hour as the only driver ever to have broken the 320 mph barrier at altitude – and he did so three times.
Even though he understandably was disappointed, Sunday’s loss really was nothing more than bad racing luck. He actually lost the race with a time that was quicker than the track record when racing began on Friday.
“It’s frustrating,” admitted the man who overcame Hodgkins lymphoma as a teenager to win the 2005 Top Alcohol Dragster world championship. “The good thing is we moved up a little in points and were we’re taking a fast and consistent hot rod to Sonoma (site of this week’s 27th annual Sonoma Nationals).
“My guys gave me a great race car every round and that’s all you can ask for,” said the graduate of Kilgore (Texas) College. “We know we had a car that could have won the race, but we’re feeling pretty good and we know if we keep getting to the plate, we’re finally gonna hit one out.”
Torrence actually gained ground on the leaders after four of the drivers who started the day ahead of him in the points race were beaten in the very first round. That included leader Doug Kalitta, reigning series champion Shawn Langdon and seven-time champion Tony Schumacher.
>>More Torrence Racing News...