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CAPCO/RIO Driver Falls to Point Leader Brown in Finals

October 16, 2016 -- Steve Torrence’s bid to win for the first time in his home state as a pro driver came up just short Sunday when the 33-year-old was beaten by reigning world champion  Antron Brown in the final round of the 31st annual AAA Texas Fall Nationals at the Texas Motorplex.

It was Torrence’s second straight runner-up finish in the Fall Nationals and his third straight in his home state including last spring’s Spring Nationals at Houston,Texas.

“We really needed to beat Antron to have a shot at the title,” Torrence said, “but those guys are bad ass.  My only hope now is that when Antron comes back to Kilgore with me this week, maybe I can hold him hostage.  Even if we don’t win the championship, though, it’s been a great year for Capco, Rio and Torrence Racing.  It’’s our best finish ever and my best season as a driver.  That’s very gratifying.”

Torrence will move on to The Strip at Las Vegas Motor Speedway two weeks hence in fifth place, 197 points behind Brown, who has won three of the first four Countdown races on the way to what likely will be his second straight Top Fuel title and third in four years.

“The goal always is to win the championship,” Torrence said, “but if you can’t do that, the goal is to finish as high in the points as you can.  We’re in a position to do that and I can’t be more proud of my team, crew chief Richard Hogan, Bobby Lagana, A.J. (tuning consultant Alan Johnson) and everyone else.  This has been our best season as a team and we just want to finish strong and get a head start on next year.”

Torrence beat Clay Millican in round one and Don Schumacher racing rivals Leah Pritchett and Shawn Langdon in the next two rounds to get another shot at Brown.

In winning his 27th, 28th and 29th rounds of the season, Torrence equaled his best ever output as a pro.  His seventh final round of the season was a career best.

“It’s pretty amazing to be a family race team out here running against the big dogs and holding our own,” said the 2005 NHRA champion in the Top Alcohol Dragster division.  “That’s our motivation. We’re out here racing for all the independents.”

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