Johnny Sauter to make Daytona 500 attempt with BK Racing

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BK Racing announced Saturday morning that Johnny Sauter will drive the team’s No. 83 car for the Daytona 500.

The team did not announce who would drive the car after the Feb. 22 race at Daytona International Speedway.

“Regardless of the outcome of the Budweiser Duels, we look forward to working with Johnny on a select race schedule in 2015,’’ BK Racing owner Ron Devine said in a statement from the team.

Sauter’s car at Daytona will be sponsored by Dustless Blasting, which will be the car’s primary sponsor for all four restrictor-plate races this season.

Sauter has 84 career NASCAR Sprint Cup starts. He drove in one race last year, placing 43rd for BK Racing at Pocono in August. His best Cup finish is fifth at Richmond in Sept. 2007. Sauter last competed in the Daytona 500 in 2007, placing 16th. He finished 26th in 2004 in the only other time he’s run that race.

Sauter has finished in the top five in points in the Camping World Truck Series in four of the last five years. He won the Daytona Truck race in 2013.

Ryan Truex made 23 starts in the No. 83 last season, with a best finish of 20th in the summer race at Pocono. Truex also failed to qualify three other times. Travis Kvapil made two starts, with a best finish of 32nd in the Chase race at Loudon. Lastly, J.J. Yeley made eight starts in the No. 83, including the final seven races of the season, with a best finish of 29th in the Chase race at Kansas.

Steve Torrence takes NHRA points lead with Gatornationals victory

NHRA Gainesville Steve Torrence
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GAINESVILLE, Fla. — Two-time defending NHRA Top Fuel champion Steve Torrence took the points lead Sunday in the AMALIE Motor Oil Gatornationals, beating his father, Billy, in the final round at Gainesville Raceway.

Torrence had a 3.809-second run at 322.11 mph to win for the third time this year and 39th overall. He is now on track for another championship despite missing the season opener.

“We’ve got some good momentum and to be in the points lead, it’s a testament to how hard these guys work,” Steve Torrence said after the NHRA Gainesville victory. “We’ve just got to stay focused and concentrate on what the task at hand is, and that’s trying to win a championship. These guys give me an unbelievable race car and you just try not to screw it up.”

Ron Capps won in Funny Car, Alex Laughlin in Pro Stock and Matt Smith in Pro Stock Motorcycle.

Capps raced to his second win this year and 66th overall, beating Tim Wilkerson with a 3.937 at 323.12 in a Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat.

Laughlin topped Aaron Stanfield with a 7.068 at 204.76 in a Chevrolet Camaro for his first win this season and fourth in his career. Smith rode to his first victory in 2020 and 25th overall, topping Andrew Hines with a 6.843 at 196.99 on an EBR.