PHOENIX, AZ — Billy Torrence and Matt Hagan had the hot hands on a cool weekend in the desert outside of Phoenix and collected victories at the Magic Dry Organic Absorbent NHRA Arizona Nationals.
Torrence collected his second career NHRA Top Fuel trophy when final-round opponent Leah Pritchett smoked the tires in the final. Prior to the final, Torrence had defeated Terry Totten, Mike Salinas, and Jordan Vandergriff to get to Pritchett. Torrence’s son, reigning world champ Steve, lost in round one and was his father’s biggest cheerleader throughout the day.
Hagan scored his third Funny Car victory at the event in the last five years, defeating world champ J.R. Todd in the final round for his 30th career win. Hagan, who had never beaten Todd in a final round, reversed that trend when Todd’s DHL Toyota backfired just off the line, triggering the safety system. After earlier victories over Phil Burkhart Jr., Shawn Langdon, and Bob Tasca III, Hagan’s Sandvik Coromant Dodge raced to the title with a 3.890.
In Pro Stock, Jeg Coughlin earned the victory over Matt Hartford.
The NHRA Mello Yello Series makes its next stop in Gainesville, FL the weekend of March 14-17 for the 50th Annual NHRA Gatornationals.