For Immediate Release
Contact: Dave Densmore, denswood@aol.com / 214-244-0008, mobile


World Champion Langdon Gets Narrow Win in Route 66 Nationals

           June 29, 2014 -- Steve Torrence’s summer of discontent continued Sunday at Route 66 Raceway where, for the fifth straight NHRA tour event, the Texan was unable to get his Capco Contractors dragster to the second round. 

            The 31-year-old title contender was swept up in a day of upsets at the 17th annual O’Reilly Auto Parts Route 66 Nationals.  He probably deserved better. 

            After reclaiming his qualifying form and starting from the No. 5 spot, the four-time tour winner logically would have expected to race someone other than reigning Mello Yello Champion Shawn Langdon in the initial round. 

            In fact, had he lined up against any of the other 14 Top Fuel qualifiers, he would have breezed into the second round with a best-of-race-day time of 3.789 seconds.

            Instead, Langdon threw up a 1,000 foot time of 3.795 seconds, quicker by .07 of a second than his qualifying effort, and, with a narrow starting line advantage, got to the finish line .033 of a second ahead of Torrence.

            Fortunately, those with whom the former Top Alcohol Dragster World Champion is vying for position fared no better.  Seven time series champion Tony Schumacher, who is just ahead of Torrence in the point standings, also was out in the first round, as was two-time 2014 winner Spencer Massey.

            That means that when the touring pros reassemble this week at Norwalk, Ohio, for the eighth annual Summit Racing Equipment Nationals, Torrence will still have an opportunity to improve his position in advance of the NHRA’s Countdown to the Championship playoffs.  The Kilgore College graduate is 33 points behind Schumacher (slightly more than one round win) and 69 behind Massey.

            Meanwhile, Billy Torrence’s bid to provide backup for his son in a second Capco Contractors dragster ended in a first round loss to eventual race winner Antron Brown. 

            “Alan Reinhart (NHRA’s lead announcer) calls this a ‘right time, right place kind of sport,’” Torrence said, “but in that first round, it looks like we were in the wrong place at the wrong time.  It’s frustrating to go up against the World Champion that early but it happens because this is such a competitive class right now.”


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