Chili Bowl: Tanner Thorson holds off Christopher Bell

Christopher Bell’s shot at four will have to wait another year.

The Joe Gibbs Racing driver, who doubles as a top-shelf dirt racer, lost the lead late in the Chili Bowl Nationals to Tanner Thorson, who powered to his first win in one of the most prestigious races in the country on Saturday in Tulsa, Oklahoma.

It’s the first Chili Bowl victory for Thorson, an ace driver who previously competed in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series.

Bell was going for his fourth win in the dirt Midget race held in his home state Oklahoma. Only two drivers have won this event at least four times: Sammy Swindell is the all-time leader with five wins, and Kevin Swindell has four.

Bell started Saturday night’s A-Main from the pole position and led the opening 36 laps of the 55-lap event. He lost the lead to Thorson following a caution, but appeared to be in position to pass for the lead — and perhaps win — with six laps to go. A flip by Brady Bacon brought out the caution, though, and Thorson maintained the lead.

Bell would finish second, with Rico Abreu, Michael “Buddy” Kofoid and Tanner Carrick completing the top five.

2022 Chili Bowl podium, L to R: Rico Abreu (3rd), Tanner Thorson (1st), and Christopher Bell (2nd)

Thorson’s win broke a two-year winning streak by Kyle Larson, the 2021 NASCAR Cup Series champ. Larson finished sixth and was one of three Cup Series regulars in the top 10. Ricky Stenhouse Jr. had a Chili Bowl for the ages and finished Saturday night ninth. His week included a photo finish heat-race victory over former Cup Series driver Kasey Kahne on Friday, followed later with a runner-up finish in the night’s A-Main race.

Larson was seeking to become just the third driver to win three in a row.

Results 55 Laps (Starting Position in [.])

1. 19T-Tanner Thorson [2]
2. 71W-Christopher Bell [1]
3. 97-Rico Abreu [3]
4. 67-Michael Kofoid [5]
5. 98-Tanner Carrick [6]
6. 01-Kyle Larson [7]
7. 55V-CJ Leary[16]
8. 5T-Kevin Thomas Jr [8]
9. 47S-Ricky Stenhouse Jr [10]
10. 7X-Thomas Meseraull[13]
11. 7C-Tyler Courtney [9]
12. 52-Blake Hahn [14];
13. 17W-Shane Golobic [18];
14. 89-Chris Windom [17]
15. 97W-Zeb Wise [11]
16. 2J-Justin Grant [4]
17. 47Z-Corey Day [20]
18. 71K-Kaylee Bryson [12]
19. 29-Tim Buckwalter [21]
20. 8J-Jonathan Beason [24]
21. 27W-Colby Copeland [15]
22. 81X-Dillon Welch [22]
23. (DNF) 87-Chase Johnson [19]
24. (DNF) 21H-Brady Bacon [23]

Lap Leaders: Christopher Bell 1-36; Tanner Thorson 37-55
Hard Charger: C.J. Leary +9



Social Media Auto Publish Powered By :