Thorson Tops Bell In Chili Bowl Pole Dash

Thorson Tops Bell
Tanner Thorson (19) battles Christopher Bell during Saturday's Pole Dash at the Chili Bowl Nationals. (Brendon Bauman photo)

TULSA, Okla. – Tanner Thorson converted the No. 1 seed in the #DoItForGrady/#BCForever Pole Dash into the pole position for Saturday night’s Lucas Oil Chili Bowl Nationals finale at Tulsa Expo Raceway.

Thorson, who led the last of four four-lap dashes to the green flag from the top spot, wired the field and beat three-time reigning Chili Bowl champion Christopher Bell to the checkered flag by .459 seconds.

That puts Thorson’s No. 19 OilFire Whiskey Spike/SR11x in prime position when the headlining 55-lap A-main hits the fifth-mile temporary dirt oval hits the track later on in the evening.

Bell will join Thorson on the front row after finishing second in the final round, with Kyle Larson and Rico Abreu making up the next row of the grid by virtue of running third and fourth, respectively.

Jonathan Beason and Tyler Courtney, who started as the 10th seed, were eliminated in round three and will start fifth and sixth in the main event. Meanwhile, Colby Copeland and Monday winner Cannon McIntosh saw their pole dash hopes end in the second round, lining them up seventh and eighth.

Ryan Bernal was bounced in the opening four-lap sprint to secure the ninth starting position.

Of note, Thomas Meseraull was not yet back on the ground in Tulsa, Okla., after having to leave late Thursday night to tend to a family situation, and was unable to participate in the Pole Dash.

As a result, Meseraull and the RMS Racing No. 7x will start outside of the fifth row, rolling off 10th.

The remaining 14 positions in the A-main starting field will be determined during twin B-mains, coming up around 9 p.m. Central live on MAVTV and

Seven drivers out of each 20-lap B-main will transfer into the grand finale.

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