Old Man takes all-Torrence Top Fuel

Billy Torrence beat his son Steve in an all-Torrence Top Fuel final round, going 3.835 at 319.67 at the eighth annual AAA Insurance NHRA Midwest Nationals at World Wide Technology Raceway near St. Louis. It was the second time they have met in the finals, with Steve taking the first matchup, and just the third father-son final-round matchup in NHRA history. B. Torrence beat Kyle Wurtzel, points leader Doug Kalitta and Leah Pritchett to reach the final round before picking up his third win this season and fourth in his career.

Billy reached the final round for the 52nd time in his career, as the defending world champ beat Scott Palmer, Pat Dakin and No. 1 qualifier Mike Salinas. The runner-up showing also pulled him to within two points of points leader Kalitta, but the final round belonged to his father, who moved to ninth in the standings with four playoff races remaining.

“To get to race Steve in the final was the goal,” Torrence said. “We watched how we qualified and we did a good job of staying on opposite sides of the ladder. It came out a little better for me in the end this time. It’s tough to come out here. You’re at the pinnacle of drag racing on this level, but I’ve got to have fun. It’s just a blessing to get to be out here with my family. We’ve raced everything and it’s just really fun. It’s a family sport and we’re right in the middle of it.”

TOP FUEL results: 

ROUND ONE — Terry McMillen, 3.781, 323.81 def. Clay Millican, 3.801, 326.08; Pat Dakin, 3.793, 327.27 def. Brittany Force, 3.802, 294.31; Austin Prock, 3.744, 326.00 def. T.J. Zizzo, 3.769, 329.75; Billy Torrence, 3.793, 326.08 def. Kyle Wurtzel, 3.908, 274.22; Mike Salinas, 3.733, 328.70 def. Cameron Ferre, 4.011, 300.66; Steve Torrence, 3.746, 325.77 def. Scott Palmer, Broke; Leah Pritchett, 3.764, 326.87 def. Antron Brown, 6.001, 116.41; Doug Kalitta, 4.285, 248.48 def. Richie Crampton, 5.086, 136.25;

QUARTERFINALS — B. Torrence, 3.801, 321.12 def. Kalitta, 3.827, 323.04; S. Torrence, 3.784, 323.58 def. Dakin, 4.656, 164.31; Pritchett, 3.835, 321.88 def. Prock, 3.925, 309.06; Salinas, 3.773, 325.22 def. McMillen, 5.250, 137.39;

SEMIFINALS — B. Torrence, 3.769, 322.96 def. Pritchett, 5.290, 132.79; S. Torrence, 3.805, 324.59 def. Salinas, 3.937, 312.13;

FINAL — B. Torrence, 3.835, 319.67 def. S. Torrence, 4.374, 195.93.

Top Fuel points

1. Doug Kalitta, 2,232; 2.  Steve Torrence, 2,230; 3.  Mike Salinas, 2,191; 4.  Brittany Force, 2,184; 5.  Leah Pritchett, 2,170; 6.  (tie) Antron Brown, 2,159; Richie Crampton, 2,159; 8.  Austin Prock, 2,153; 9.  Billy Torrence, 2,152; 10.  Clay Millican, 2,125.

story by NHRA, photo by Tim Hailey

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