Christopher Bell wins Chili Bowl for 2nd straight year

Christopher Bell wins Chili Bowl for 2nd straight year

Bell's win past year was the first of the season in which he went on to win five races and the championship in NASCAR's Truck Series.

Bell, who grew up in nearby Norman, benefitted from NASCAR Monstery Energy Series star Kyle Larson's misfortune. But he might be even more hard to defeat behind the wheel of a midget auto, especially when it's Chili Bowl time.

Larson and Bell had appeared to be the class of the field during the week of qualifiers, and they had a spirited match race in which Larson shoved Bell to capture the pole for the 55-lap event on the quarter-mile clay oval. Almost 360 drivers competed this year including many stars from California.

Larson, obviously, was more disappointed, especially after losing the lead to Bell on a restart early in the race and then taking it back when Bell got caught behind a lapped auto.

"To win the Chili Bowl last yer was something I'll never forget", said Bell, the reigning NASCAR Camping World Truck Series champion, on the MavTV broadcast. "His turn is coming", Bell said.

Christopher Bell wins Chili Bowl for 2nd straight year

Scelzi started 16th in the main event and was one of the few drivers working the outside of the track to move forward early.

Larson looked fast during the entire event but ended up with a DNF after suffering apparent engine failure while in the lead with 15 laps remaining in the A-Main.

Scelzi, son of former NHRA national champion Gary Scelzi, was runner-up in the Northern Auto Racing Club/King of the West winged sprint vehicle series last season and is planning to barnstorm the Midwest this summer. He was hit and flipped at the start of the second B main and was eliminated.

Two 2017 NASCAR Cup playoff drivers will try to race their way in - Kahne, who finished fifth Friday, will have to finish in the top-six of his heat race to advance to the main event.

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