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Four-Time Champ After Third Victory in NHRA New England Nationals

June 1, 2023 -- In the 49 years that the NHRA has crowned its series champions based on accumulative points, only two pro drivers have claimed titles without winning a single tour event. 

Rob Bruins earned the 1979 Top Fuel championship on the strength of runner-up finishes in three of 10 events while Eddie Krawiec rode four final round appearances to the 2008 Pro Stock Motorcycle title

Steve Torrence has no intention of joining that fraternity but, entering this week’s 10th NHRA New England Nationals, seventh race on this year’s Camping World tour, the four-time champ has proven that even in this highly-competitive era, such an achievement still might be possible.

Although he is winless on the season, the 40-year-old Texan has led the Top Fuel point standings after all but one race this year with a display of consistency that has made his CAPCO Contractors team the standard by which all others are measured.

As a result, when racing commences with qualifying Friday at New England Dragway, the 53-time tour winner will be among the Top Fuel favorites in an event he won back-to-back in 2018 and 2019.  Significatnly, even though he hasn’t hoisted a winner’s trophy in eight months, Torrence believes he and his team are very close.

“Even though they’ve shut us out of the winners’ circle so far, these bad-to-the-bone CAPCO boys have kept us in the hunt,” said the only driver to have won NHRA series titles in both the Top Alcohol (2005) and Top Fuel divisions. 

“We know how to win, but it’s a lot harder with so many good teams out there,” he said.  “We just have to keep going rounds and putting ourselves in position and eventually, everything’ will come together.  I have all the faith in the world in these CAPCO boys.” 

Although he was upended by little known rookie Scott Farley in last year’s first round, Torrence returns to New England’s premier drag racing venue with a lot of confidence.

He is, after all, the track record holder at 3.664 seconds, a mark he established in qualifying No. 1 a year ago.  Furthermore, in addition to his victories, a currently inactive Billy Torrence won in his only appearance in the New England Nationals in 2021, giving Team Capco three wins in the last four races contested on the all-concrete surface.

Qualifying begins with a single nitro session at 5 p.m., Texas time, on Friday.  Qualifying continues Saturday with nitro sessions at 1 and 4:30 p.m., Texas time.  Eliminations begin at 10 a.m., Texas time, on Sunday.

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