TeeJay Crawford

Justin Grant threepeats in Chili Bowl Prelims

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Justin Grant won his preliminary night of the Chili Bowl Nationals for the third year in a row. Grant started on the pole in Friday night’s  A-Main, which put him in the perfect position to lead all 25 laps.

“This one was a lot of work,” Grant said at ChiliBowl.com. “You know, I’ve been really fortunate to win some decent races and most of them have been showing up and walking in at three o’clock in the afternoon with my helmet bag and jumping in the car and just doing that and going home.

“It started with a truck, trailer, and a credit card. And a lot of 12-, 14-hour days leading up to this, a ton of work. It just very validating that we could pull off a win. Those guys believed in me probably more than I did myself.”

Courtesy TeeJay Crawford

Tanner Thorson was the only driver that could challenge Grant in his dominating display. He put himself in a position to make the pass on Grant several times. Eventually Thorson had to settle for second. His consolation is that also locked him into Saturday’s Feature. Thorson finished .168 seconds behind at the checkers.

Thorson reeled in the race leader when they battled in clean air. When traffic became a factor on Lap 12, Grant had the clear advantage.

Chad Boat advanced from eight to complete the podium. He was followed by NASCAR driver Ricky Stenhouse Jr. who started to the outside of Grant. Tucker Klaasmeyer moved from fifth to eighth.

Kasey Kahne failed to advance from the B-Main after finishing sixth.

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MORE: Kyle Larson wins Chili Bowl Night 2

Friday’s Results

1. Justin Grant
2. Tanner Thorson
3. Chad Boat
4. Ricky Stenhouse Jr.
5. Tucker Klaasmeyer
6. Alex Schutte
7. Daryn Pittman
8. Dave Darland
9. Spencer Bayston
10. Grady Chandler
11. Sean Dodenhoff
12. Luke Icke
13. DJ Netto
14. Kevin Thomas Jr.
15. Chris Andrews
16. Hunter Schuerenberg
17. Austin Liggett
18. Ethan Mitchell
19. Steve Buckwalter
20. Shane Cottle
21. Korey Weyant
22. Terry Nichols
23. Kyle Bellm
24. Brad Loyet

‘One and Only’ Kyle Larson wins Outlaws opener at Knoxville Raceway

Kyle Larson wins Knoxville
Paul Arch/World of Outlaws
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The magic of dirt racing wins for Kyle Larson continued Thursday night at Knoxville Raceway, where he scored his third consecutive World of Outlaws victory at the famed half-mile track to open “The One and Only.”

After starting 10th, Larson sliced through the field and passed pole-sitter Logan Schuchart to lead the final eight laps in the No. 57 of car owner Paul Silva.

“Just an awesome race,” Larson said after earning $10,000 for his second consecutive NOS Energy Drink Sprint Car Series victory (after winning at Pevely, Missouri, last Saturday), his sixth Outlaws victory this season and 14th of his career.

LARSON ON NASCAR‘I’d love an opportunity if it came’

“I was able to track Logan down and hit the bottom really well in (turns) 1 and 2 and got a run on him.  It felt like I needed to take advantage of that before we got to heavier traffic and slid him and felt some contact. So, glad to see him not in the wall or anything like that. Just, hard work there. Heartbeat is up again.”

Kyle Larson wins Knoxville
Kyle Larson scored his sixth World of Outlaws victory Thursday (Trent Gower/World of Outlaws).

It was the fourth Knoxville victory this year for Larson, who swept a World of Outlaws doubleheader weekend June 12-13 at the Sprint Car Captial of the World. He has more than 30 victories this year in sprint cars and midgets.

The One and Only continues Friday night with another $10,000 feature race that will set the starting lineup for Saturday’s Brownells Capitani Classic, which pays $50,000 to win.

The event is the Outlaws’ richest purse of 2020 and subs in for the annual Knoxville Nationals, which was canceled for COVID-19 concerns. Larson, a two-time Knoxville Nationals runner-up, has said winning The One and Only would be on the same as Knoxville’s signature event because of its tough three-day format.

Through the first of three nights, Schuchart and Larson are tied for second in The One and Only points standings, which factor in qualifying, heats, dash and feature races. Aaron Reutzel, an All Star Circuit of Champions stalwart who finished third Thursday, leads with 430 points.

A crash in Thursday’s 25-lap feature eliminated past Outlaws champions Brad Sweet and Donny Schatz after Cory Eliason spun in front of Sweet in Turn 1 to start the wreck, which also collected Sweet’s teammate, James McFadden. Sweet and Schatz finished outside the top 20, which moved Schuchart into the points lead for the 2020 season.

Schuchart still seemed slightly miffed after finishing second to Larson.

“As the race went on, I felt like I wasn’t hitting my marks as good,” he said. “I would have liked to of had a little bit better of a race with Kyle there. I wish his slide job was a little better there, but he’s got a reputation to live up to. That’s where you let other people make the rules and maybe we’ll get him next time.”


RESULTS

NOS Energy Drink Feature (25 Laps) – 1. 57-Kyle Larson [10]; 2. 1S-Logan Schuchart [1]; 3. 87-Aaron Reutzel [2]; 4. 2-Carson Macedo [24]; 5. 41-David Gravel [6]; 6. 21-Brian Brown [7]; 7. 71-Spencer Bayston [3]; 8. 18-Gio Scelzi [15]; 9. 12N-Joey Saldana [5]; 10. 5-Ian Madsen [19]; 11. 17A-Austin McCarl [21]; 12. 1A-Jacob Allen [11]; 13. 7BC-Tyler Courtney [16]; 14. 7S-Jason Sides [20]; 15. 24-Rico Abreu [22]; 16. 4-Terry McCarl [13]; 17. 2KS-Brooke Tatnell [18]; 18. O9-Matt Juhl [23]; 19. 17-Sheldon Haudenschild [25]; 20. 83-Daryn Pittman [9]; 21. 11K-Kraig Kinser [17]; 22. 15-Donny Schatz [8]; 23. 26-Cory Eliason [4]; 24. 49-Brad Sweet [12]; 25. 9-James McFadden [14]; Lap Leaders: Logan Schuchart 1-17, Kyle Larson 18-25; KSE Hard Charger Award: 2-Carson Macedo[+20]

Kyle Larson wins Knoxville
Kyle Larson celebrated with his family and team after the first night of The One and Only (Trent Gower/World of Outlaws).