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



August 15, 2012 -- The jockeying for the 10 coveted starting positions in NHRA’s Countdown to 1 championship playoff is down to two more stops and Steve Torrence already has a firm grip on a top-four start.

It is quite a feat for a new one-car Top Fuel team to take on more experienced multi-car teams and not only run with them, but beat them.  Torrence and crew chief Richard Hogan have the Torrence Racing/Capco Contractors Inc. dragster resting one point out of third place. 

Torrence’s impressive overall performances during the recently completed string of five races in six weeks erased all but one of Tony Schumacher’s previous lead.  He accumulated 429 points to boost his total to 1,108 as the teams prepare for the Lucas Oil Nationals, Friday through Sunday, at Brainerd International Raceway. 

The Texan from Kilgore also distanced himself from Doug Kalitta, who is fifth with 902 points. 

Overall, he has been to the finals five times in the last nine races, winning at Atlanta and Englishtown, N.J. prior to ending the three-race Western Swing Aug. 6 with a victory in Seattle. 

“We are ready to get back to work,” said Torrence, “We have nothing to lose.  We will be battling for third and fourth places in the next two races and the guys ahead of us (Spencer Massey, 1,236, and Antron Brown, 1,231) will be battling for first and second place. 

“It is amazing when I think about it.  Instead of fighting just for a place in the Countdown, we are racing for third and fourth!  That says a lot about our team”

Torrence is familiar with Brainerd International Raceway and its strong fan base.

“I am happy to be racing again at Brainerd,” he commented.  “We always like going there.  I’ve done well there in Sportsman racing.  I won in Top Alcohol Dragster in 2005.  They have great fans that follow NHRA racing.  They camp out at the track all weekend and have a good time.”

The race is the 16th of 17 leading into the six-race championship finale.

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