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Bell Serves Notice At Chili Bowl

| , RacinToday.com Friday, January 12 2018

NASCAR driver Christopher Bell had a big night at the Chili Bowl on Thursday. (RacinToday/HHP file photo by Ashley R Dickerson)

Oklahoma favorite son Christopher Bell launched his title defense Thursday with a dominating performance during John Christner Trucking Qualifying Night, capping Day No. 3 of the 32nd annual Lucas Oil Chili Bowl Nationals presented by General Tire.

A 23-year-old native of Norman, Okla., Bell treated car-owner Keith Kunz to his third preliminary trip to Victory Lane in as many nights at River Spirit Expo Center in Tulsa.

“It’s just good race cars. That’s what it really boils down to,” Bell said after his 25-lap, flag-to-flag A-Feature victory. “All my teammates have been really fast all week long. Keith just brings really, really good cars here. It’s pretty remarkable.”

Bell began his 2017 season by winning the Chili Bowl Nationals title and ended it by clinching the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series championship in a Toyota Tundra fielded by Kyle Busch Motorsports. Bell, who honed his skills on various dirt tracks in the Dallas-Fort Worth Metroplex including venerable Cowtown Speedway, will compete in the NASCAR Xfinity Series this season in the No. 20 Toyota Camry fielded by Joe Gibbs Racing.

Bell, who qualified on-pole for the feature, stretched his lead to over a half-straightaway before the race’s first caution flew on Lap 4. Preferring the hub, Bell again gapped the field with Chase Jones working to hold onto the runnerup spot from Caleb Armstrong. Slowed again on Lap 14, Bell saw a 4.760-second advantage evaporate as the field rolled single-file to the green with Shane Golobic now in the mix along with Chase Johnson.

Running second with eight laps to go, Golobic pursued Bell’s No. 71W on the cushion. Bell was headed to an apparent easy victory until the caution flag set up a two-lap dash to the finish. Golobic carried his run with Bell onto the backstretch, where a tap to the concrete upset Shane’s momentum. Bell ran to a nearly one-second advantage at the checkered flag to lock into his fifth career Saturday night A-Feature appearance.

Golobic advanced to his sixth championship feature with his runnerup performance and was joined on the podium by Johnson, who secured his first trip to finale. Indiana’s Tracy Hines crossed fourth with Caleb Armstrong shuffled to fifth. Rolling from 17th, Ryan Bernal came up to sixth with Billy Pauch Jr. seventh. Matt Sherrell advanced from 13th to eighth, followed by Tim Crawley in ninth. Jerry Coons Jr. completed the top-10.

While Bell grabbed the win, two drivers made headlines with runs into the A-Feature from D-Main competition. Michael Pickens and Tanner Thorson each clawed his way from heat races into the feature. Thorson advanced position 37 times to end up 11th in the A-Feature while Pickens knocked down 39 spots to end his A-Feature 14th.

A three-day total of 258 drivers have drawn-in for competition. Thursday’s lineup included 87 of those competitors with 95 more slated to run Friday. The Fastenal Flip Count saw some tense moments but ended the night at 42 on the week, with all drivers able to walk away.

The Chili Bowl Nationals continue Friday, with sponsorship from Vacuworx Global. The River Spirit Expo Center will play host to hot laps starting at 4 p.m. (CST) and racing at 5 p.m. General admission tickets, which double as a Pit Pass, are $45 per weekday and $60 on Saturday. Fans can find online PPV coverage at http://www.racinboys.com. All official press, updates and results on the Chili Bowl can be accessed online at http://www.chilibowl.com.

John Christner Trucking Night Results

Heat Races: Top 40 in passing points advance to Qualifiers

Heat 1 (8 Laps): 1. 24-Tracy Hines, [5]; 2. 92M-Josh Most, [7]; 3. 19S-Matt Streeter, [4]; 4. 18S-Danny Smith, [2]; 5. 321-Chad Winfrey, [6]; 6. 93-Trey Lambert, [3]; 7. 926-Morgan Frewaldt, [1]; (DNS) 8K-Chase Jones.

Heat 2 (8 Laps): 1. 71W-Christopher Bell, [8]; 2. 7F-Michael Faccinto, [4]; 3. 15D-Andrew Deal, [3]; 4. 88-Scottie McDonald, [1]; 5. 35L-Cody Ledger, [6]; 6. 68B-Blain Petersen, [5]; 7. (DNF) 23P-Patrick Lawson, [7]; 8. (DNF) 29-Anthony Nocella, [2].

Heat 3 (8 Laps): 1. 05N-Paul Nienhiser, [4]; 2. 9E-Rick Shuman, [2]; 3. 73-Jac Haudenschild, [8]; 4. 7MF-Chance Morton, [5]; 5. 4B-Ty Hulsey, [3]; 6. 24F-Hunter Fischer, [6]; 7. 75X-Mike Griffiths, [1]; 8. 2-Ryan Hall, [7].

Heat 4 (8 Laps): 1. 71R-Chase Johnson, [6]; 2. 67K-Holly Shelton, [8]; 3. 49-Andy Bradley, [7]; 4. 0K-Don O’Keefe Jr., [1]; 5. 00C-Grady Chandler, [5]; 6. 11A-Brandon Gray, [2]; 7. 7CG-John Ivy, [4]; 8. 18K-Tyler Williams, [3].

Heat 5 (8 Laps): 1. 2D-Matt Sherrell, [2]; 2. 21K-Cory Kruseman, [1]; 3. 5-Jerry Coons Jr, [7]; 4. 29J-Logan Jarrett, [3]; 5. 22E-Shane Stewart, [6]; 6. 7S-Pat Schudy, [5]; 7. 14T-Tony Rossi, [8]; 8. 37F-JR Bonesteel, [4].

Heat 6 (8 Laps): 1. 2DJ-Tyler Edwards, [1]; 2. 4J-Tim Crawley, [3]; 3. 87-Ryan Bernal, [5]; 4. 4P-Paul McMahan, [7]; 5. 3T-Tim Barber, [4]; 6. 56X-Mark Chisholm, [2]; 7. 2J-Cody Lampe, [8]; 8. 84S-Shaun Shapel, [6].

Heat 7 (8 Laps): 1. 25B-Steve Buckwalter, [7]; 2. 47W-Dylan Westbrook, [1]; 3. 11C-Chett Gehrke, [3]; 4. 7D-Michelle Decker, [2]; 5. 91M-Chase Majdic, [8]; 6. 51J-Zach Madrid, [5]; 7. 67F-Kyle O’Gara, [6]; 8. 77W-Matt Juhl, [4].

Heat 8 (8 Laps): 1. 45-Roger Crockett, [1]; 2. 77P-Billy Pauch Jr., [3]; 3. 47-Danny Stratton, [2]; 4. 71H-Hudson O’Neal, [6]; 5. 5T-Presley Truedson, [5]; 6. 7JR-JD Black, [4]; 7. 22B-Troy Betts, [7]; 8. 37X-Cameron Hagin, [8].

Heat 9 (8 Laps): 1. 49ER-Caleb Armstrong, [8]; 2. 57-Maria Cofer, [6]; 3. 11E-Cory Elliott, [7]; 4. 81-Jerry Hammock, [2]; 5. (DNF) 15X-Frankie Guerrini, [3]; 6. (DNF) 9K-Kyle Schuett, [4]; 7. (DNF) 42-Frank Flud, [1]; 8. (DNF) 39-Michael Pickens, [5].

Heat 10 (8 Laps): 1. 55X-C.J. Leary, [6]; 2. 93K-Riley Kreisel, [4]; 3. 9-Matt Moore, [1]; 4. 10C-Dalton Camfield, [8]; 5. 17RB-Ryan Bickett, [3]; 6. 83-Brad Thompson, [2]; 7. (DNF) 2AG-Danny Clark, [5]; 8. (DNF) 63-Tanner Thorson, [7].

Heat 11 (8 Laps): 1. 17W-Shane Golobic, [1]; 2. 7X-Gage Walker, [2]; 3. 76G-David Gravel, [4]; 4. 1H-Mike Hess, [7]; 5. 1K-Brayton Lynch, [6]; 6. 96-Cody Brewer, [5]; 7. 0B-Jay Ball, [3].

D-Features: Top 2 advance to corresponding C-Feature

D-Feature 1 (10 Laps): 1. 63-Tanner Thorson, [3]; 2. 67F-Kyle O’Gara, [2]; 3. 37X-Cameron Hagin, [4]; 4. 8K-Chase Jones, [9]; 5. 7CG-John Ivy, [1]; 6. 75X-Mike Griffiths, [6]; 7. (DNF) 84S-Shaun Shapel, [5]; 8. (DNF) 18K-Tyler Williams, [7]; 9. (DNF) 37F-JR Bonesteel, [8]; (DNS) 23P-Patrick Lawson.

D-Feature 2 (10 Laps): 1. 39-Michael Pickens, [7]; 2. 42-Frank Flud, [6]; 3. 22B-Troy Betts, [1]; 4. 29-Anthony Nocella, [9]; 5. 2-Ryan Hall, [4]; 6. 77W-Matt Juhl, [8]; 7. 0B-Jay Ball, [3]; 8. (DNF) 2AG-Danny Clark, [2]; 9. (DNF) 926-Morgan Frewaldt, [5].

C-Features: Top 4 advance to corresponding B-Feature

C-Feature 1 (12 Laps): 1. 63-Tanner Thorson, [15]; 2. 4B-Ty Hulsey, [7]; 3. 321-Chad Winfrey, [1]; 4. 67F-Kyle O’Gara, [14]; 5. 5T-Presley Truedson, [4]; 6. 51J-Zach Madrid, [8]; 7. 17RB-Ryan Bickett, [6]; 8. 7JR-JD Black, [10]; 9. 14T-Tony Rossi, [11]; 10. 68B-Blain Petersen, [9]; 11. 93-Trey Lambert, [13]; 12. 56X-Mark Chisholm, [12]; 13. 0K-Don O’Keefe Jr., [5]; 14. (DNF) 81-Jerry Hammock, [2]; 15. (DNF) 18S-Danny Smith, [3]; (DNS) 22E-Shane Stewart.

C-Feature 2 (12 Laps): 1. 00C-Grady Chandler, [5]; 2. 39-Michael Pickens, [15]; 3. 35L-Cody Ledger, [1]; 4. 7D-Michelle Decker, [3]; 5. 1K-Brayton Lynch, [2]; 6. 15X-Frankie Guerrini, [7]; 7. 3T-Tim Barber, [6]; 8. 96-Cody Brewer, [10]; 9. 9K-Kyle Schuett, [12]; 10. 24F-Hunter Fischer, [8]; 11. 88-Scottie McDonald, [4]; 12. 42-Frank Flud, [14]; 13. 7S-Pat Schudy, [9]; 14. 11A-Brandon Gray, [13]; 15. 2J-Cody Lampe, [11]; (DNS) 83-Brad Thompson.

Qualifiers: Top 16 in combined passing points advance to the A-Feature

Qualifier 1 (10 Laps): 1. 71W-Christopher Bell, [6]; 2. 55X-C.J. Leary, [5]; 3. 5-Jerry Coons Jr., [3]; 4. 93K-Riley Kreisel, [2]; 5. 10C-Dalton Camfield, [1]; 6. 4P-Paul McMahan, [7]; 7. 71H-Hudson O’Neal, [9]; 8. 21K-Cory Kruseman, [8]; 9. 47-Danny Stratton, [10]; 10. (DNF) 05N-Paul Nienhiser, [4].

Qualifier 2 (10 Laps): 1. 4J-Tim Crawley, [1]; 2. 2DJ-Tyler Edwards, [2]; 3. 49ER-Caleb Armstrong, [6]; 4. 11E-Cory Elliott, [3]; 5. 1H-Mike Hess, [7]; 6. 67K-Holly Shelton, [5]; 7. 7MF-Chance Morton, [10]; 8. 91M-Chase Majdic, [9]; 9. 57-Maria Cofer, [4]; 10. 47W-Dylan Westbrook, [8].

Qualifier 3 (10 Laps): 1. 77P-Billy Pauch Jr., [1]; 2. 24-Tracy Hines, [5]; 3. 2D-Matt Sherrell, [3]; 4. 45-Roger Crockett, [2]; 5. 73-Jac Haudenschild, [4]; 6. 25B-Steve Buckwalter, [6]; 7. 19S-Matt Streeter, [8]; 8. 15D-Andrew Deal, [9]; 9. 9-Matt Moore, [10]; 10. 9E-Rick Shuman, [7].

Qualifier 4 (10 Laps): 1. 17W-Shane Golobic, [2]; 2. 71R-Chase Johnson, [6]; 3. 7X-Gage Walker, [7]; 4. 87-Ryan Bernal, [1]; 5. 76G-David Gravel, [8]; 6. 7F-Michael Faccinto, [3]; 7. 92M-Josh Most, [5]; 8. 49-Andy Bradley, [4]; 9. 11C-Chett Gehrke, [9]; 10. 29J-Logan Jarrett, [10].

B-Features: Top 4 advance to the A-Feature

B-Feature 1 (15 Laps): 1. 87-Ryan Bernal, [3]; 2. 1H-Mike Hess, [2]; 3. 47-Danny Stratton, [10]; 4. 63-Tanner Thorson, [13]; 5. 7F-Michael Faccinto, [5]; 6. 21K-Cory Kruseman, [9]; 7. 93K-Riley Kreisel, [1]; 8. 10C-Dalton Camfield, [4]; 9. 11C-Chett Gehrke, [11]; 10. 321-Chad Winfrey, [15]; 11. 67F-Kyle O’Gara, [16]; 12. 9E-Rick Shuman, [12]; 13. 4B-Ty Hulsey, [14]; 14. 05N-Paul Nienhiser, [8]; 15. 49-Andy Bradley, [7]; 16. (DNF) 7MF-Chance Morton, [6].

B-Feature 2 (15 Laps): 1. 76G-David Gravel, [1]; 2. 45-Roger Crockett, [3]; 3. 71H-Hudson O’Neal, [5]; 4. 39-Michael Pickens, [14]; 5. 92M-Josh Most, [2]; 6. 57-Maria Cofer, [7]; 7. 15D-Andrew Deal, [9]; 8. 19S-Matt Streeter, [6]; 9. 4P-Paul McMahan, [4]; 10. 7D-Michelle Decker, [16]; 11. 00C-Grady Chandler, [13]; 12. 35L-Cody Ledger, [15]; 13. 91M-Chase Majdic, [8]; 14. 47W-Dylan Westbrook, [11]; 15. 9-Matt Moore, [10]; 16. 29J-Logan Jarrett, [12].

A-Feature: Top 3 advance to Saturday’s A-Feature

A-Feature (25 Laps): 1. 71W-Christopher Bell, [1]; 2. 17W-Shane Golobic, [6]; 3. 71R-Chase Johnson, [2]; 4. 24-Tracy Hines, [5]; 5. 49ER-Caleb Armstrong, [3]; 6. 87-Ryan Bernal, [17]; 7. 77P-Billy Pauch Jr., [9]; 8. 2D-Matt Sherrell, [13]; 9. 4J-Tim Crawley, [8]; 10. 5-Jerry Coons Jr., [12]; 11. 63-Tanner Thorson, [23]; 12. 76G-David Gravel, [18]; 13. 45-Roger Crockett, [20]; 14. 39-Michael Pickens, [24]; 15. 25B-Steve Buckwalter, [10]; 16. 73-Jac Haudenschild, [16]; 17. 67K-Holly Shelton, [14]; 18. 55X-C.J. Leary, [4]; 19. 71H-Hudson O’Neal, [22]; 20. 1H-Mike Hess, [19]; 21. 11E-Cory Elliott, [15]; 22. (DNF) 7X-Gage Walker, [7]; 23. (DNF) 47-Danny Stratton, [21]; 24. (DNF) 2DJ-Tyler Edwards, [11].

Lap Leader(s): Christopher Bell 1-25; Hard-Charger: Tanner Thorson plus-14.

Nightly Sponsors

Friday, Jan. 12 _ Vacuworx Global Qualifying Night
Saturday, Jan. 13 _ Lucas Oil Championship Feature Events

Lucas Oil Chili Bowl Nationals Champions

Year _ Driver (Owner)

2017 _ Christopher Bell (Keith Kunz/Curb-Agajanian)
2016 _ Rico Abreu (Keith Kunz/Curb-Agajanian)
2015 _ Rico Abreu (Keith Kunz/Curb-Agajanian)
2014 _ Bryan Clauson (Joe Dooling/Rusty Kunz/Curb Records)
2013 _Kevin Swindell (Swindell Motorsports/Curb Records)
2012 _Kevin Swindell (Swindell Motorsports/Curb Records)
2011 _Kevin Swindell (Swindell Motorsports/Curb Records)
2010 _Kevin Swindell (Swindell Motorsports/Curb Records)
2009 _Sammy Swindell (Swindell Motorsports/Curb Records)
2008 _Damion Gardner (Jason Leffler)
2007 _Tony Stewart (Tony Stewart Motorsports)
2006 _Tim McCreadie (Steve Smith)
2005 _Tracy Hines (Wilke-Pak)
2004 _ Cory Kruseman (Andy Bondio)
2003 _Dan Boorse (Dan Boorse)
2002 _Tony Stewart (Keith Kunz)
2001 _ Jay Drake (Keith Kunz)
2000 _ Cory Kruseman (Andy Bondio)
1999 _ Dan Boorse (Dan Boorse)
1998 _ Sammy Swindell (Pete Willoughby)
1997 _ Billy Boat (John Lawson)
1996 _ Sammy Swindell (Rusty Kunz /Jay McKinnie)
1995 _ Donnie Beechler (Zarounian Motorsports)
1994 _ Andy Hillenburg (Keith Kuntz /Rusty Kunz)
1993 _ Dave Blaney (Ralph Potter)
1992 _ Sammy Swindell (Dave Ellis)
1991 _ Lealand McSpadden (Andy Bondio)
1990 _ John Heydenreich (Tony Finley)
1989 _ Sammy Swindell (Jack Runyon)
1988 _ Scott Hatton (Jerry Hatton)
1987 _ Rich Vogler (Bob Lowe)

VIROC Champions _ Chad Boat (2018), Kyle Larson (2017 and 2014), Tanner Thorson (2016), Sammy Swindell (2015, 2012, 2011, 2009), Kevin Swindell (2013), Brad Loyet (2010).

Trade Show _ A long-standing tradition at the Chili Bowl, the Trade Show will be open to the public each day free of charge. All variety of racing products, apparel and more is available with well over 100 vendors. The Trade Show covers approximately 20,000 square feet.

| , RacinToday.com Friday, January 12 2018
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