Four-Time Reigning Top Fuel Champ Can’t Capitalize on Track Record

June 5, 2022 -- Four-time reigning Camping World Top Fuel Champion Steve Torrence couldn’t capitalize on the track record he set during qualifying Friday at New England Dragway, losing to Scott Farley in the opening round of Sunday’s ninth NHRA New England Nationals when his Capco Contractors dragster was unable to recover from a loss of traction.

Farley, who had not previously won a round of racing on the pro tour, stopped the 1000-foot timers in 4.062 seconds, the quickest run of his career.  Torrence, who qualified No. 1 at a record-setting 3.664 seconds, slowed to only 5.816 seconds in the first round at a finish line speed of only 148.35 miles per hour, negating an enormous starting line advantage (.261 of a second).

“Good for those guys,” said an obviously disappointed Torrence, “not so good for us Capco Boys. “That’s why we don’t run these things on paper I guess.  Obviously, we should have won that round, but anything can happen in this sport and usually does.  We’ll just look at the data and get ready to get after it again on Father’s Day (at the NHRA Thunder Valley Nationals in Bristol, Tenn.).”

The loss brought an end to Team Capco’s three-race winning streak at New England Dragway which began with back-to-back wins for the younger Torrence in 2018 and 2019 and continued with dad Billy Torrence’s victory in 2021.  It also dropped the 39-year-old reigning champ from second to third in season points in his ongoing bid to become just the fourth pro driver in NHRA history after John Force, Tony Schumacher and Bob Glidden to win as many as five consecutive series titles.

A 51-time winner on the pro tour and a former Lucas Oil Series Top Alcohol Dragster World Champion (2005), Torrence has yet to win a race in 2022.  It’s the first time since 2015 that he has gone more than seven events without a tour victory. 

“We’re halfway to the Countdown and sitting third in points,” Torrence said.  “Like I said, we’ll just keep trying every week to put ourselves in position to win.  It’ll happen.  There are a lot of good cars out there but I wouldn’t trade my seat in this Capco car for anything.  There’s still a lot of racing to do and it’s gettin’ exciting now.”

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