Like father, like son.
And then like father again.
In an interesting seesaw of power in the Top Fuel ranks, Billy Torrence took the top spot in the class in round one, watched it slip out of his grasp by, of all people, his son Steve, and then retook the position to earn his first No. 1 qualifier of the season Saturday at the Dodge NHRA Finals presented by Pennzoil at The Strip at Las Vegas Motor Speedway.
“That’s what we’re here to do. We’re here to race,” Torrence said. “I thought (Steve) was number one, honestly. I didn’t realize we’d gotten around him. But the car was on a good hit and both cars ran well. We just pulled around and got to be number one.”
Billy Torrence had the quickest car in round one of qualifying on Saturday, pacing the field with a 3.774-second pass to earn the provisional top spot. A few hours later in Q2, Steve Torrence drove around his father with a 3.731 in the next-to-last pairing, before watching Billy retake the top spot with a 3.728 at 325.30 mph to earn the low qualifier hat in the Capco Contractors dragster.
Steve Torrence settled for second with a 3.731 at 330.39 mph, with Doug Kalitta checking in in third with a 3.746 at 327.74 mph. Antron Brown (3.762) and Shawn Langdon (3.775) rounded out the top five.
“It’s always gratifying (to qualify first). This whole deal being at the top of the food chain, and all of the boys working so hard, it’s just been a blessing to even be a part of it,” Torrence said. “This particular hat is not as gratifying as the rest of them would be, but it’s always a good deal.”
Billy Torrence will get Cameron Ferre in round one of the 14-car field on Sunday, but while he will be racing for his second win of the season, all eyes will be focused squarely on his son and the championship battle
If Steve Torrence can drive around round one opponent Kebin Kinsley on Sunday, he will clinch his third-straight Top Fuel world championship. If not, the door will be opened to Kalitta who would need to go on to win the race to have a chance at the title.
— Competition Plus (@competitionplus) October 27, 2020