Defending NHRA Top Fuel world champion Steve Torrence continues his hot pace in hot conditions……
Texan Steve Torrence secured a second consecutive and third of the season NHRA circuit victory during the Virginia NHRA Nationals hosted by Virginia Motorsports Park — which featured racing under very hot atmospheric and track conditions.

Ron Capps (Funny Car), Bo Butner (Pro Stock) and Andrew Hines (Pro Stock Motorcycle) were also winners in their respective categories at the eighth of 24 events during the 2019 NHRA Mello Yello Drag Racing Series season.

Torrence walked away Sunday with his 30th Top Fuel victory in his Capco Contractors dragster with his run of 3.881-seconds at 319.82 mph to defeat Antron Brown’s 3.899 at 309.49 in the final round. This was the 10th time the pair had met in the finals. Brown won the first five and S. Torrence has clinched the last five victories.

Torrence secured round wins against Canadian native Todd Paton, Scott Palmer, and his father Billy Torrence en route to his 45th career final round.

NHRA Top Fuel powerhouse Steve Torrence racked up his 30th career event win.

“Hands down and hats off to the whole Capco team,” S. Torrence stated. “Those guys gave me the best race car of the day. We were the guys that went down the track four times in a row. All I had to do was not run over anything or anybody and they gave me the best car ever. Richard Hogan (crew chief) and Bobby Lagana (crew chief) they make the right calls when the pressure is on and when the heat is out there. In cowboy terms, I rode the two best horses out there.”

Brown defeated teammate Leah Pritchett, Brittany Force and Mike Salinas.

Capps secured his second consecutive Funny Car Wally in his NAPA Brakes Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat to defeat the defending world champion J.R. Todd in the finals. This win marks Capps’ 62nd Funny Car win and 63rd overall along with his 30th victory with crew chief Rahn Tobler since 2012.

Capps beat Jim Campbell, Robert Hight and teammate Tommy Johnson Jr. to reach the final round, earning his first career win at Richmond Motorsports Park.

“Just go up there and not make a mistake was my mindset today,” Capps said. “Tobler told me in the trailer prior to the final round, ‘I don’t know why it smoked the tires all day. Everybody has had problems and we’re just going to put it like we did first round when it went 3.99.’ I rolled it in there and obviously it went a bit slower but that’s what he went up there to do. Vintage Rahn Tobler.”

Ron Capps prevailed in fuel FC for the second straight NHRA event.

Todd beat Bob Tasca III, teammate Shawn Langdon and Jonnie Lindberg to reach the finals.

Butner locked-in his fourth win this season when his pass of 6.599 at 209.01 in his Jim Butner Auto Chevrolet Camaro took down Greg Anderson. This is Butner’s fourth victory this season, first at the facility and 11th of his career. Anderson was the last driver in 2004 to secure four victories within the first five events of the season.

Butner also went to the final round of the SAMTech.Edu Factory Stock Showdown where he fell short to Drew Skillman on a holeshot.

“It’s been an amazing season and a good call to come back,” Butner stated. “We made a very good run in the final. Greg and I both made mediocre runs up until that point. The track was great. It’s very smooth and the Franklins did a great job with this place and it would be nice if we came back here a couple of times. It was fun running two cars multiple rounds today. It was a good day and I can’t complain.”

Points leader Bo Butner won again in Pro Stock

Butner defeated Wally Stroupe, Chris McGaha and Jeg Coughlin Jr. on his way to his 24th career final round.

In Pro Stock Motorcycle, Hines, the No. 1 qualifier, earned his third straight victory, fourth overall of 2019 and 52nd in his career after going 6.845 at 195.68 on his Screamin’ Eagle Vance & Hines Harley-Davidson Street Rod to defeat teammate Eddie Krawiec in the final round. The last Pro Stock Motorcycle rider to win four of the first five events to start the season was Hines’ brother, Matt Hines, in 1998.

Matt Hines won in Pro Stock Motorcycle from the pole qualified position.

“We have developed a very good hot weather tune up for our Street Rods and that’s saying a lot,” Hines said. “We typically tend to not look forward to the middle of the season because that’s where our performance tends to fall off and people make up ground on us. Today we were able to take what we’ve learned the last couple of weeks between Charlotte when it got hot and Atlanta when it was really hot. We don’t ever go up there (the starting line) with the same tune up, ever. It was a little bit of picking on it here and there which has led to us finding the window where we need to be.”

The category points leader defeated Jiana Salinas, Ryan Oehler and defending world champion Matt Smith to reach the final round. Krawiec took down Kelly Clontz, Karen Stoffer and Hector Arana Jr. en route to his 25th final round against Hines.

The NHRA Mello Yello Drag Racing Series continues to Chicago for the Route 66 NHRA Nationals at Route 66 Raceway May 30th – June 2nd.

South American Score!

NHRA hosted its 5th of 12 Pro Mod class racing events for 2019 and that eliminator produced an international winner.

Sidnei Frigo, who is from Brazil, claimed his first victory of the season within the E3 Spark Plugs NHRA Pro Mod Drag Racing Series presented by J&A Service.

Brazil’s Sidnei Frigo prevailed to win in NHRA Pro Mod for the 3rd time in his career.

Frigo ran 5.796-seconds at 256.55 mph in his Itatiba Sao Paulo Brazil Chevrolet Camaro picking up the final round win on a holeshot over Stevie “Fast” Jackson’s pass of 5.768 at 251.16.

It marks the third career E3 Spark Plugs NHRA Pro Mod victory for Frigo, who qualified second and also earned round wins over Chip King, Alex Laughlin and Canadian Eric Latino.

The E3 Spark Plugs NHRA Pro Mod Drag Racing Series presented by J&A Service continues June 7-9 with the Menards NHRA Heartland Nationals presented by Minties at Heartland Motorsports Park in Topeka, Kan.

For more detailed coverage of Pro Mod racing at VMP – visit our VP Racing Fuels Pro Mod Portal subsection : HERE

The Lucas Oil Lowdown

Action within the Lucas Oil Drag Racing Series level featured a big win in the (Sam-Tech School of Automotive Machinists) Factory Stock Showdown event by versatile driver, Drew Skillman.

Racing his supercharged FS/XX 2018 Ford Mustang, Skillman, who is from Indiana, won for the second time this season.

Drew Skillman roared to victory in the Factory Stock Showdown feature.

In the final round that featured two Cobra Jet cars, Drew combined a better starting line RT (.028) with a time of 7.990 secs at 170.69 mph to defeat his opponent Bo Butner (who later went on to win in Pro Stock).

Butner had a quicker and faster 7.989 secs at 171.29 mph. Butner had too been the odds on favourite — after he qualified #1 with a low ET and top speed run of 7.943 secs and 176.63 mph.

Skillman’s event win also included round wins over Dan Fezell, Scott Libersher and Geoff Turk.

NHRA Lucas Oil event racing also produce wins for Joe Santangelo in Super Stock racing his ’97 Chevy Camaro and by Wallace Dent who won Stock eliminator for the first time in a ’98 model Camaro.

Super Stock winner – Joe Santangelo

Wallace Dent is a first time NHRA national event champ in Stock – racing his high-flying ’98 Camaro

Tom Goldman won in Super Gas with his cool topless early model Corvette.

The event’s index classes were won by Chris Garretson (Super Comp 8.90) and by Tom Goldman (Super Gas 9.90). Chad Trayler was the winner for the RacingRV’ Top Dragster class eliminator.

Chris Garretson finished on top in Super Comp 8.90 index racing.

Chad Trayler was victorious in a tough Top Dragster eliminator.

Posted with files by NHRA Communications and Bruce Biegler
Photos by Bruce Biegler & Dave DeAngelis

To link to LMLCMedia’s extensive photo gallery from this event click: HERE