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


Capco Contractors Top Fuel Driver Starts Midwest Nationals No. 2 in Points

September 25, 2014 -- You know you’ve arrived in NHRA professional drag racing when the only driver ahead of you in the Mello Yello driver standings is seven-time series champion and perennial Auto Racing All-American Tony Schumacher.

            That’s the situation in which Steve Torrence finds himself this week when the pro tour moves to Gateway Motorsports Park for the 17th annual AAA Insurance Midwest Nationals, third of six events comprising the NHRA’s Countdown to the Championship.

            “It’s good to be No. 2,” Torrence said, “because you try harder but I’d much rather be where Tony is.  He’s got a big lead on the rest of us (after winning the first two playoff races).  He’s 100 points ahead and back here there are seven of us separated by about 50 points. 

            “That means you can’t afford to make any mistakes,” cautioned the four-time tour winner and former Top Alcohol Dragster World Champion (2005).  “If you do, you look up and you’ve lost six positions.  That’s the last thing we want.  We want this Capco Contractors dragster to be racing for the championship when we get to Pomona (Calif., site of the season-ending Auto Club Finals).”

            The 31-year-old graduate of Kilgore College could take a big step toward closing the gap on the leader simply by ending a season-long victory drought.

            Runner-up at the Chevrolet Performance U.S. Nationals at Indianapolis, Ind. for the second straight year, Torrence is the only driver among the top nine without a victory so far this season.

            Nevertheless, he’s climbed higher in the standings than ever thanks to a strong qualifying effort and race day consistency.  Only Doug Kalitta has earned more qualifying bonus points, a trend the Texan hopes continues at Gateway, the track on which he earned his Top Fuel license in 2005.

            “It’s been a little frustrating (not to have won yet),” Torrence said, “but things have a way of evening out.  All we can do is keep showing up and giving ourselves a chance and I think we can do that because (crew chief) Richard Hogan has a better handle on the car right now than he’s had all year.

“Plus, we held back some of our inventory, especially clutch discs and stuff we know runs well, stuff that’s been consistent, for the Countdown,” he said.  “That burned us the last couple years, but we’ve learned from it.  Hopefully it’ll pay off .”

            Although he hasn’t won a race in more than a full calendar year, Torrence’s confidence level is surprisingly high due in no small part to the fact that a second Capco Contractors dragster driven by his dad, Billy, has been providing valuable data that has helped offset one of the advantages enjoyed by the large, multi-car corporate teams.

            “Dad’s having a ball,” Torrence said, “but if he can help us out in the process, that’s a win-win.  Having a second car out here in the Countdown levels the playing field a little bit with all the big teams.  We’re a family racing team and to have a little success on the big stage, that’s very gratifying.”

            The elder Torrence, founder and CEO of Capco Contractors, was a top eight qualifier at the first two Countdown races and got his first round win of the season in the Pep Boys Carolina Nationals.


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