NASCAR & Auto Racing

Defending champ Steve Torrence tops his dad for NHRA Top Fuel victory in Topeka

In this photo provided by the NHRA, Steve Torrence does a burnout in Top Fuel qualifying at the Menards NHRA Heartland Nationals drag races Saturday, June 8, 2019, in Topeka, Kan. (Marc Gewertz/NHRA via AP)
In this photo provided by the NHRA, Steve Torrence does a burnout in Top Fuel qualifying at the Menards NHRA Heartland Nationals drag races Saturday, June 8, 2019, in Topeka, Kan. (Marc Gewertz/NHRA via AP) AP

Steve Torrence and Robert Hight maintained their spots atop the points standings following victories Sunday at the Menards NHRA Heartland Nationals.

Torrence, the defending Top Fuel champion, beat his father in the final round for his fifth consecutive victory. It was his first career win at Heartland Motorsports Park and the 32nd of his career.

After qualifying first, Torrence beat his dad, Billy Torrence, 3.750 to 3.768 seconds. Steve Torrence hit 326.16 mph to his dad’s 326.0.

“There are no losers or winners today,” Steve Torrence said. “My dad has given me the opportunity to do anything and everything I’ve wanted to do in life and to be able to come out here and race with him as a family and to do this its pretty unbelievable.

“I saw him right beside me when we shut it off. So, it was an unbelievable day. This is probably one of the most special ones ever.”

Hight won in Funny Car, his 49th career victory. He beat defending champion J.R. Todd en route to the final round, where Hight outran Jack Beckman’s Dodge Charger in 3.895 seconds at 330.88 mph in a Chevy Camaro SS.

“I think that was the second time this year we’ve qualified in the bottom half of the field,” Hight said. “We just had bad luck. We didn’t miss it or do anything wrong, we just simply had bad luck every run. Finally, we get it together.

“Once you get going with this team, you just start rolling.”

Topeka is the 10th of 24 stops on the Mello Yello Drag Racing Series schedule. The next stop is in Tennessee at the Thunder Valley Nationals on June 14-16 at Bristol Dragway.

NHRA Results

At Heartland Motorsports Park, Topeka

Final Finish Order

Top Fuel: 1, Steve Torrence. 2, Billy Torrence. 3, Austin Prock. 4, Antron Brown. 5, Doug Kalitta. 6, Brittany Force. 7, Richie Crampton. 8, Clay Millican. 9, Leah Pritchett. 10, Scott Palmer. 11, Cameron Ferre. 12, Terry Totten. 13, Lex Joon. 14, Terry McMillen.

Funny Car: 1, Robert Hight. 2, Jack Beckman. 3, John Force. 4, Tommy Johnson Jr.. 5, Bob Tasca III. 6, Ron Capps. 7, Tim Wilkerson. 8, J.R. Todd. 9, Matt Hagan. 10, Dale Creasy Jr.. 11, Jim Campbell. 12, Terry Haddock. 13, Cruz Pedregon. 14, Jack Wyatt. 15, Shawn Langdon.

Sunday’s Final Results

Top Fuel — Steve Torrence, 3.750 seconds, 326.16 mph def. Billy Torrence, 3.768 seconds, 326.00 mph.

Funny Car — Robert Hight, Chevy Camaro, 3.895, 330.88 def. Jack Beckman, Dodge Charger, 3.969, 323.97.

Pro Modified — Steve Jackson, Chevy Camaro, 5.747, 251.72 def. Clint Satterfield, Camaro, 5.933, 251.58.

Top Alcohol Dragster — Shawn Cowie, 5.213, 279.15 def. Troy Coughlin Jr., 7.406, 118.32.

Top Alcohol Funny Car — Sean Bellemeur, Chevy Camaro, 5.446, 269.29 def. Jay Payne, Camaro, 5.592, 262.79.

Competition Eliminator — Bruno Massel, Dragster, 6.764, 177.95 def. Shaun Vincent, Chevy S-10, 8.404, 158.32.

Super Stock — Gene Mosbek, Plymouth Savoy, 10.234, 126.34 def. Vic Penrod, Chevy Camaro, 9.898, 130.67.

Stock Eliminator — Chris Chaney, Chevy Camaro, 10.215, 129.59 def. Scott Libersher, Camaro, Foul - Red Light.

Super Comp — Kyle Fickler, Dragster, 8.913, 161.63 def. Veron Rowland, Dragster, 8.899, 166.15.

Super Gas — Shawn Carter, Chevy Cavalier, 9.896, 166.31 def. Collin Becker, Chevy Camaro, 9.888, 164.45.

Super Street — Trevor Larson, Chevy Corvette, 10.853, 139.54 def. Mike Campbell, Chevy Malibu, Foul - Red Light.

Top Fuel Harley — Tii Tharpe, JTR, 6.313, 227.38 def. Bob Malloy, Buell, 7.391, 132.69.

Factory Stock Showdown — Stephen Bell, Chevy Camaro, 7.908, 174.12 def. Arthur Kohn, Camaro, 7.951, 174.19

Point Standings

Top Fuel: 1, Steve Torrence, 949. 2, Doug Kalitta, 628. 3, Brittany Force, 625. 4, Antron Brown, 619. 5, Mike Salinas, 573. 6, Clay Millican, 557. 7, Leah Pritchett, 529. 8, Richie Crampton, 467. 9, Austin Prock, 452. 10, Billy Torrence, 440.

Funny Car: 1, Robert Hight, 933. 2, Tommy Johnson Jr., 725. 3, John Force, 681. 4, Ron Capps, 666. 5, J.R. Todd, 656. 6, Jack Beckman, 645. 7, Matt Hagan, 592. 8, Tim Wilkerson, 556. 9, Shawn Langdon, 468. 10, Bob Tasca III, 455.

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