The grass is green. The sky is blue. Kyle Larson wins Tuesday at Chili Bowl.
His win last night made it four consecutive victories and seven over the last ten years, extending his reign as the most dominant driver in Tuesday’s 15-year history at the Lucas Oil Chili Bowl Midget Nationals.
An unconventional path to Saturday’s main event, Larson’s victory came in the rubber, something we haven’t seen at Chili Bowl in several years. Before the track faded, however, fans witnessed a hellacious nine-lap, three-way war to kickstart the preliminary feature.
It was a toss-up with Larson, Thomas Meseraull and Shane Golobic going three-wide at several points. Making the moment even more special was the fact that only two of the three contenders would lock-in, meaning every single pass counted.
Meseraull, from the pole position, officially led the opening eight laps in his RMS Racing No. 7X Spike/Toyota. Golobic came within .016 seconds at one point and inched ahead at other times, but never actually led a lap aboard the Matt Wood Racing No. 17W NOS Energy Drink ride.
On lap nine, Larson aced the low line to pull alongside T-Mez and then chucked a slider into turn one to clear his move for the lead. From there, he never relinquished his top spot, leading the final 22 laps in his King/Toyota No. 01 prepared by Paul Silva.
Arguably the most talked about moment came on the final lap, when second-running Shane Golobic tangled with lap car Tanner Carrick, who earlier was running third before he hit the cone. Afterwards, Golobic stated that Carrick “decided to chop down” on him, but Carrick says Golobic “absolutely ran through me.” Nonetheless, the heartbreak of Golobic tumbling from an A-Main to E-Main in seconds completely changed the course of the week.
Capitalizing on Golobic’s misfortune, Meseraull reclaimed the second spot on the green-white-checkered restart and held on for a second-place result. He gave Larson several shots to the back bumper but with the both drivers locking-in, he was content with settling for second, as long as Larson knew he was there.
For Larson, it’s his tenth career Chili Bowl main event start. For Meseraull, it’s his eighth shot in Saturday’s finale.
Trailing those two was Zach Daum in third, Cole Bodine in fourth, Danny Stratton in fifth, Derek Hagar in sixth, Chase Johnson in seventh, and Hank Davis in eighth. Those drivers will land in Saturday’s B-Main.
Heading to the C-Main is Daison Pursley, Frank Flud, Kyle Jones, Nick Drake, Michael Faccinto, and Jonathan Beason.
Off to the D-Main is Noah Harris, Anton Hernandez, Mitchell Davis, Tanner Carrick, Aiden Purdue, and Shane Cottle. Moving to Saturday’s E-Main is Carson Kvapil, Shane Golobic, Brody Fuson, and Curtis Jones.
The 35th annual Lucas Oil Chili Bowl Midget Nationals continues Wednesday with more preliminary action broadcasted live on FloRacing.