For Immediate Release
Contact: Joe Sherk, jlsherk@aol.com/360-981-4806, mobile

Steve Torrence’s new Top Fuel team still a work in progressSteve Torrence Tries His New Ride

On a sweltering August day in East Texas, Steve Torrence sits at the controls of a huge dirt excavator that is slowly digging a deep trench that will soon be home to a large oil (or gas) pipeline.

“We have been so busy that we’ve had to hire more people,” Torrence said from inside the air conditioned cab on the excavator that is part of Capco Contractors, Inc., the Torrence family’s business.  “We have been very fortunate.”

While Torrence is busy with the business, the action is fast and furious at the new Torrence Racing Top Fuel shop in Brownsburg, Ind., about 1,000 miles northeast of their Kilgore, Texas home.

“It takes a tremendous amount of work to start a race team like ours,” Torrence said. “Richard Hogan, our crew chief, and the guys at the shop have been working diligently to get everything together.  I definitely want to get back in the car as soon as I can.  If things go as planned, we will use the last five races of the season as our 2012 pre-season test sessions.”

Hogan has been working with the crew while overseeing the arrival of the myriad parts and pieces necessary to create and maintain a Top Fuel team that will compete with the best in NHRA’s Full Throttle Series. 

There’s no one-stop shopping here.  There was a long list of items to be purchased and shipped. 

“We are just waiting for parts,” Hogan said.  “We probably have more than 50, but less than 100, vendors we are dealing with because of all the miscellaneous pieces we need.  One guy’s making something and another guy’s making something else and we keep adding as we go.  We have two people working for us and we have to find some more crew guys.  When you start with nothing, what else are you going to do?”

Torrence last raced on May 15 at Atlanta Dragway.  Since then, his focus has been on the fledgling team and lending a hand whenever needed on the business side.  He has yet to venture to a race track because, he says quite simply, “I’d much rather race than watch other people do it.  I’m a lousy spectator.” 

But that will change Monday when he attends the U.S. Nationals in Indianapolis, near the team’s shop in Brownsburg, Ind. 

Last season, in his first full-season on the circuit, Torrence drove Dexter Tuttle’s dragster to an eighth-place finish.  He was the lone class newcomer to claim a top 10 berth. 
Hogan, meanwhile, is a veteran crew chief /tuner with a solid resume.  “The car is just about finished,” he said.  “Steve and (builder) Brad Hadman were at our shop last week to finish fitting Steve in the car and we’ve moved along from there.

“Once we get all the parts we’ve ordered, everything will be better.

“We are targeting the Dallas race (Sept. 22-25) as our first time out, and we hope to be able to test at Indianapolis next week after the U.S. Nationals.  I don’t see why we wouldn’t be able to do it.  That will be dependent on everything showing up when it is supposed to in the next couple of days.

“I won’t be making any plans until all the things we need are sitting inside the door.”

Hogan would be happy to see a long line of delivery trucks queued up in the shop’s driveway.  That would alleviate any doubts about when the team will hit the track.Torrence, Hadman and Shipman

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