Just a week ago, we brought you an article explaining why the Chili Bowl Nationals attract the best of the best in drivers and cars alike. Oklahoma’s own Christopher Bell has proven that he definitely belongs among that company by bringing home the Golden Driller after the 31st running of this heart-pounding event.
Bell, 22, is the second Oklahoma native to win the Chili Bowl Nationals. The first, Andy Hillenburg, drove to victory more than two decades ago in 1994. Both the drivers ran with Keith Kunz Motorsports.
Bell explained that his strategy was focused on driving less aggressively, which might seem odd in such an intense race.
“I think this is the third time I’ve started on the front row,” he said, “and I would run into trouble because I was pushing too hard. The difference between this year and years past was it’s been attack, attack, attack and in this 55 lap race, you don’t need to do that, so I just ran as hard as I needed to.”
For the first 25 laps, Justin Grant lead the field in the Clauson-Marshal No. 39BC. After that Bell took the lead and maintained it for the remainder of the race.
Bell, who is a full-time driver for the NASCAR Camping Truck World Series, remarked that winning the Chili Bowl Nationals has been a lifelong dream of his.
The full race results are available on ChiliBowl.com.