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


Patience, Perspective Keep Torrence in Hunt for Title

July 23, 2015 -- As an outdoorsman and hunter, Steve Torrence learned patience.  As a cancer survivor, he achieved perspective.  As a Top Fuel racer, he’s had to apply large measures of both to a 2015 season that has been among the most challenging of his career.

With the start of the arduous Western Swing, a series of three back-to-back-to-back events that historically have separated the contenders from the pretenders in the battle for the NHRA Mello Yello Championship, the 32-year-old hopes he finally has explored all the various ways to lose and can now get back to the business of winning.

“It seems like we’ve lost every way you can this year,” said the former Top Alcohol Dragster World Champion (2005) in advance of this week’s 36th annual Mopar Mile-High Nationals.  “Hopefully, that’s all behind us because we have a lot of ground to make up.”

A four-time tour winner at the wheel of the Capco Contractors dragster and the No. 6 finisher in last year’s race for the championship, Torrence has had a car capable of winning almost every race this year but returns this week to Bandimere Speedway only 10th in points with five races remaining before the start of the NHRA playoffs.

He presently occupies the final transfer position into the Countdown to the Championship.  It’s an uncomfortable position, but not as uncomfortable as being outside the Top 10 as he was two weeks ago.  

After speeding to a career best 1,000 foot time of 3.734 seconds in qualifying for the Route 66 Nationals at Chicago, the talented Texan was pulling away from three-time world champion Larry Dixon in a key second round heat when the supercharger drive belt snapped, leaving him powerless while Dixon drove by for the win.

“That’s the worst feeling,” Torrence said.  “The adrenaline is flowing, you know you’re ahead and then you’re dead in the water (at 278 .92 miles per hour, down from a normal 320 mph).  You’re just hoping the other guy isn’t close enough (to catch you) but figure he probably is.”

That’s where perspective and patience come into play.    

“It’s just part of it,” Torrence said. “You regroup, go back and do it again the next week.  Eventually, things turn around and, when they do, you have to be ready to take advantage.”

The No. 1 qualifier at Denver in 2013 and the track record holder for speed at 322.96 mph, Torrence knows he’s in a make-or-break situation insofar as the playoffs are concerned.  It’s a role he embraces.

“That’s what it’s about,” he said.  “I know I have a car under me and team behind me that’s as good as any out here.  The thing is, to win one of these races against the people out there right now takes four perfect runs on race day.  The car has to be perfect and the driver has to be perfect, too.  There aren’t any gimmees, but I’m not discouraged at all.  I always expect it to be our week.”  


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