2021 Lucas Oil Chili Bowl Nationals

Kyle Larson Is Back-to-Back Lucas Oil Chili Bowl Champion

Kyle Larson Is Back-to-Back Lucas Oil Chili Bowl Champion

It took Kyle Larson 13 aching years to finally win the elusive Golden Driller, and then it only took him one more to add a second to his collection.

Jan 18, 2021 by FloRacing Staff
Kyle Larson Is Back-to-Back Lucas Oil Chili Bowl Champion

It took Kyle Larson 13 aching years to finally win the elusive Golden Driller, and then it only took him one more to add a second to his collection.

Starting from the outside pole on Saturday, the defending Chili Bowl champion immediately raced to the lead, and never relinquished it. He’s the fifth driver in 35 years to lead a CBN finale from green-to-checkered and joins Kevin Swindell as the only two to ever do it in the 55-lap era.


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Watch Saturday's 55-lap finale.


Larson’s newest crown didn’t come without challenge, however, as it was actually the more difficult of his now two titles at the Lucas Oil Chili Bowl Midget. Justin Grant and Christopher Bell rose to the occasion as his biggest threats, constantly threatening Yung Money for the top spot.

On a freshly re-worked track, the trio of Larson, Grant and Bell ran 1-2-3 for the first 45 laps before the complexion of the race changed late in the running. An incoming slide job from Bell’s CB Industries, iRacing, Spike/Toyota No. 84X moved him beyond Grant and in Larson’s footsteps with ten to go.

When a caution with four to go flew, the stage was set for the battle we’ve all come to know and love. Larson vs. Bell for a Golden Driller.

It was a four-lap dash. Winner take all. You’re the hero with all of the bragging rights.

Both throttling the cushion with a Chili Bowl championship on the line, disaster struck on lap 53 as Bell followed Larson into the turn three cushion. His right rear bit the treacherous curb and just as quickly sent his No. 84X spiraling through the year with a wicked series of flips culminating in a roll against the fence. Bell was okay, but his chance at a fourth Golden Driller was not.


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Christopher Bell took one of the wildest rides of the week late in the going.


From there, Larson survived not one, but two green-white-checkered restarts to gap Grant and secure a flag-to-flag victory. With MAVTV and JVI Group aboard his King/Toyota No. 01, Larson banked back-to-back Chili Bowl’s and extended Paul Silva’s incredible streak to four-for-four inside the Expo.


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Hear from Kyle Larson after his second Lucas Oil Chili Bowl win.


Justin Grant of Ione, Calif. made it a NorCal 1-2 with his career-best Chili Bowl effort coming in his RMS Racing debut with NOS Energy Drink colors on the Spike/Toyota No. 2J. Nevada’s Tanner Thorson, who miraculously recovered from a preliminary heat race flip, charged from the C to B to A-Main on Friday night and then ran to a podium result in Saturday’s finale with the Dave Mac Motorsports, Healing Tree, Spike/Toyota No. 08.

Closing out the top five was Keith Kunz Motorsports shoe Cannon McIntosh in fourth and hard charging Daryn Pittman with a big 20th-to-5th bid in his personal No. 21.

Rounding out the Chili Bowl top ten was Chris Windom in sixth, Ricky Stenhouse Jr. in seventh, Brad Sweet in eighth, Spencer Bayston in ninth, and Logan Seavey in tenth. 

You can relive all of the action from this week’s incredible Lucas Oil Chili Bowl Midget Nationals on FloRacing. The 36th annual event returns in just 356 days with FloRacing set to bring you all the coverage again!