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Victory in Dodge Nationals Brings Fourth Straight Title Closer Than Ever
LAS VEGAS, Nevada – Steve Torrence won for the 50th time in his professional career Sunday, sending his Capco Contractors Top Fuel dragster past the similar machine of Mike Salinas and straight into the record books in the final round of the 21st annual Dodge SRT Nationals at The Strip at Las Vegas Motor Speedway
Top Fuel – Steve Torrence, Capco Contractors dragster, 3.717, 329.50 mph, def. Mike Salinas, Scrappers Racing dragster, 3.737, 314.24 mph.
Funny Car – Cruz Pedregon, Snap-on Tools Dodge Charger, 4.257, 225.03 mph, def. Ron Capps, NAPA Dodge Charger, 6.854, 80.86 mph.
Pro Stock – Dallas Glenn, RAD Torque Systems Chevrolet Camaro, 6.660, 204.60 mph, def. Erica Enders, Melling Performance Chevrolet Camaro, 6.685, 203.74 mph.
In winning the 1,000th national championship event in NHRA drag racing history, Torrence moved one giant step closer to his fourth consecutive Camping World Top Fuel title.
When qualifying for the season-ending 56th Auto Club Finals begins Nov. 12th at Pomona, Calif., he will lead second place Brittany Force by 105 points and Salinas by 172. That’s a formidable lead even going into a race that awards half again as many points as any other in the playoffs.

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Photos by Mark Rebilas
Steve Torrence shows off special edition NHRA Wally trophy after winning the Dodge SRT Nationals at Las Vegas, the NHRA’s 1,000th national championship event.

“We’re not gonna do anything different,” he said of his approach. “We’re just gonna go out there and try to win the race.
“This is just awesome,” he said of Sunday’s success, which earned him a unique version of the NHRA Wally trophy celebrating the organization’s 1,000th race. “All the glory goes to God and to my momma (Capco Racing boss ‘Momma Kay’ Torrence). To win the 1,000th NHRA race with these Capco boys is just unbelievable for a kid that had a dream to drive a Top Fuel car just one time.”
Sunday’s win was the 10th win in 19 races this season for the 38-year-old Texan, assuring that he will be the first pro driver to win at least half the races contested in a season for the first time since 2008 when Tony Schumacher won 15 of 24.
With Sunday’s triumph, his fourth in his last seven Vegas starts and his second in the current Countdown, Torrence becomes just the 14th pro driver to win 50 times on the NHRA’s Camping World tour, joining such straight-line luminaries as John Force, Kenny Bernstein, Schumacher, Antron Brown and Greg Anderson.

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Steve Torrence became just the 14th pro driver to win as many as 50 NHRA tour events Sunday when he and his Capco Contractors Top Fuel dragster won the 21st Dodge SRT Nationals at Las Vegas.

The win was his 42nd in the last five seasons. That’s 24 more than any other pro driver over that span. Funny Car standouts Ron Capps, Matt Hagan and Robert Hight are the next closest in numbers with 18, 17 and 16 wins, respectively.
Dad and Capco teammate Billy Torrence, who went out in the second round Sunday, is one of three Top Fuel drivers tied for the second most wins in the category since the start of the 2017 season with eight. The others are Force and Leah Pruett.
The win avenged a final round loss to Salinas just two weeks ago at Bristol, Tenn., and it made Torrence the first Top Fuel driver to win more than once in this Countdown. He won previously at St. Louis. This was the fifth consecutive final round appearance for Torrence and his Capco crewmates after exiting in the semifinals at the first two Countdown races and briefly surrendering the lead to Force.
Torrence won Sunday from his favorite qualifying position: No. 2, from which he has won 19 of his 50 career titles, twice as many as from any other starting spot.
The only pro drivers to have won four or more successive titles are Don Prudhomme, Kenny Bernstein, Lee Shepherd, Bob Glidden, Tony Schumacher and John Force. Schumacher, currently the only Top Fuel driver in the group, was the last to achieve the standard when he won six straight titles from 2004 through 2009.
That last driver other than Torrence to win the championship was Force, who snatched the title from his grasp on the final day of the 2017 season. Motivated by that result, he has been virtually unbeatable ever since.

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Steve Torrence executes a burnout in his Capco Contractors Top Fuel dragster prior to winning Sunday’s Dodge Nationals at Las Vegas and moving one step closer to a fourth consecutive NHRA championship.

(After six of seven races in the 2021 Countdown to the Championship)
1. Steve Torrence, Kilgore, Texas, Capco Contractors dragster 2694
2. Brittany Force, Yorba Linda, Calif., FLAV-R-PAC/ Monster Energy dragster 2589
3. Mike Salinas, San Jose, Calif., Scrappers Racing dragster 2522
4. Justin Ashley, Plainview, N.Y., Strutmasters/GuardLab dragster 2506
5. Billy Torrence, Kilgore, Texas, Capco Contractors dragster 2411
6. Leah Pruett, Avon, Ind., Sparkling Ice Spiked Seltzer dragster 2343
7. Clay Millican, Drummonds, Tenn., Parts Plus dragster 2302
8. Antron Brown, Pittsboro, Ind., Matco Tools dragster 2285
9. Shawn Langdon, Indianapolis, Ind., DHL/Kalitta Air dragster 2260
10. Doug Kalitta, Ann Arbor, Mich., Mac Tools/Mobil 1 dragster 2211

21st Dodge SRT Nationals

Qualifying – Steve Torrence, No. 2 at 3.710 seconds, 325.51 miles per hour
Qualifying bonus points – 2 for second quick time in Q3
Round 1 – S. Torrence, 3.751, 325.61 mph, def. Jim Maroney, 4.119, 227.58 mph.
Round 2 – S. Torrence, 3.723, 328.62 mph, def. Tripp Tatum, 6.679, 87.13 mph.
Semifinals – S. Torrence, 3.688, 329.58 mph, def. Justin Ashley, 4.727, 331.69 mph.
FINAL – Steve Torrence, 3.717, 329.50 mph, def. Mike Salinas, 3.737, 314.24 mph.

Qualifying – Billy Torrence, No. 5 at 3.715 seconds, 327.51 miles per hour
Qualifying bonus points – None
Round 1 – B. Torrence, 3.738, 325.53 mph, def. Shawn Langdon, 3.781, 312.21 mph.
Round 2 – B. Torrence, 3.741, 330.39 mph, lost to Mike Salinas, 3.723, 330.63 mph.

Next Scheduled CAMPING WORLD TOUR Event:
56th Auto Club Finals
Nov. 14, 2021
Auto Club Raceway
Pomona, Calif.
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