Surprise Driver Takes Podium Finish in Chili Bowl Tulsa, OK -The surprise of the A Main feature in the 21st Annual O'Reilly Chili Bowl Midget Nationals was the ARCA RE/MAX and NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series driver Justin Allgaier. Allgaier, 20 started in the sixth position on the grid after finishing second in his qualifying feature Thursday night. Allgaier, despite some engine concerns in the afternoon practice session, came into Saturday night’s event with full force behind the wheel of the NO. 86 Illinois Corn Marketing Board –Ethanol Performs, Auto Xpress, Hoosier Tire Midwest Spike Midget. Allgaier’s car was strong allowing him to get past Shane Cottle on lap 43 for the third place position and kept the pressure on second place driver J.J. Yeley. With only a few laps left Allgaier ran out of time to sweep past Yeley to get to former NEXTEL Cup Series Champion Tony Stewart who was the eventual winner of the prestigious Midget Car Nationals.
“This is incredible,” Justin Allgaier said. “The car really came into me which made my job much more fun. I lost my brakes about lap three so I knew I had to be cautious but I really thought I had something for J.J. (Yeley) and perhaps even Tony (Stewart). I just ran out of laps. I have to say being on the podium with two exceptional drivers is a dream come true.”
Allgaier qualified in 2006 for the A Main as well but his night ended early after a crash on lap one. Bound and determined Allgaier with a borrowed powerhouse which was smoking after his qualifying race on Thursday, had no trouble motoring the Spike midget around the Tulsa, Oklahoma Expo Center with tremendous force earning the respect from all who saw him perform.
“I have to thank Ebby (Bergfield) & Rob (Buress) the car owners for this opportunity,” Allgaier said. “This is a tremendous night not only for me, but for my wife Ashley and my Mom and Dad. We really weren’t sure what was going to happen after our engine blew on the dyno last week. We arranged to borrow one from the Norris family and it was pretty stout. I have to thank the good Lord for giving me the ability to do what I do; I am humbled and grateful. If this is any precursor to how the 2007 Season is going to be then we are in fantastic shape.”
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