Newcomer Becomes 22nd Different Champion In Chili Bowl Nationals History

Sunday, January 16th 2022, 9:55 pm

TULSA, Oklahoma -

The Chili Bowl never seems to disappoint and this year was no different for the final 24 cars that qualified for the A-Main Finale.

Fan favorite and Norman native Christopher Bell was looking for his fourth win in the dirt and was pretty much on cruise control for the entire race.

Bell started the A-Main final from the pole and held the lead for 36 laps in the 55-lap event but Tanner Thorson was able to take the lead following a caution.

Thorson took that lead after a flip by Brady Bacon and he crossed the finish line with the checkered flag to bring home the Nevada native’s first Golden Driller, while also becoming the 22nd different champion in Chili Bowl Nationals history.

"To finally get it done, it just shows how great our team is and how everybody involved is. Man, this was awesome," Thorson said.

Bell, who finished second, gave credit to this year's winner.

"I felt like we were pretty equal whenever we got into (the) open track. I ran my line, you know he did a really good job of not making mistakes and getting away from me," Bell said.

Rico Abreu finished third and he felt the track never gave him the proper footing on Sunday.

"I gave up a spot there moving up early, you know, got kinda tight on the cushion and then I was able to make those spots back, Abreu said."

Tanner Thorson is the first non-NASCAR driver to bring home the Golden Driller since six years ago after his Chili Bowl victory.

"To get it done, it just shows you how great our team is and everybody involved is. Man, this was awesome" Thorson said.