Chili Bowl (race)
The Chili Bowl Midget Nationals is an indoor midget car racing event. It takes place on a 1/4 mile dirt track at the Tulsa Expo Center in January, two weeks after Christmas. NASCAR calls it the "biggest Midget race of the year". It is nicknamed the "Super Bowl of midget racing".
The inaugural Chili Bowl was organized by Lanny Edwards and partner Emmett Hahn  It was named after a local company who sponsored the first event. The race has been hosted at the Tulsa Expo Center since it was founded in 1987.
The inaugural 1987 event consisted of 52 midgets competing in the 2-day event. The event now consists of five days of qualifiers for the Saturday night A-main event, with over 341 cars entered for the 2020 race. One fifth of the drivers compete in each qualifying night's event, attempting to qualify for the A-main. Each qualifying night has heat races, dash-type events, and a 25 lap feature. Drivers who finish poorly in their heat event in their qualifying night start deep in final night qualifying events and have to finish high in many events to make the A-main field. A driver who started in the lowest "P" event would have to finish high in P, O, N, M, L, K, J, I, H, G, F, E, D, C, and B events to reach the A-main. The top two finishers in the qualifying night's feature event plus the top seven finishers the two Saturday night B-main events progress into the Saturday 55-lap A feature field between 24 to 26 cars.
The event also has rewards for winning. The winner of the second-night Vacuworks International Race of Champions between past Chili Bowl winning drivers, drivers nominated by former race champion teams, and the reigning national Midget Driver of the Year will be awarded a guaranteed starting position. If the driver who won the preceding year's Chili Bowl or the Race of Champions fail to qualify, they are added as the 25th and 26th cars in the field.
The National Midget Auto Racing Hall of Fame uses the event to induct its next class of members.
The event is held at the Tulsa Expo Center (now called the River Spirit Expo), the home of The Golden Driller. It accommodates hundreds of race cars, bleachers for 15,000 fans, and a trade show, all under one roof.
The clay which once covered the adjacent fairgrounds is used for the event. The quarter mile indoor track is not affected by adverse weather or drying from the wind or sun.
Drivers in other series who come from a midget car background frequently race in the event. The 2007 competitors included NASCAR drivers Tony Stewart, Justin Allgaier, J. J. Yeley, A. J. Fike, Josh Wise, Kasey Kahne, and Jason Leffler, World of Outlaws sprint car drivers Terry McCarl, Tim McCreadie, Danny Lasoski, and Sammy Swindell, NHRA drag racing champions Cruz Pedregon and Gary Scelzi, IndyCar drivers A. J. Foyt IV, Tom Bigelow and Billy Boat, and numerous USAC racers. Drivers in 2008 came from 29 American states, Canada, and Australia.
NASCAR driver Tony Stewart, a two-time winner of the event, said,
This is the only place that you can take the best Midget drivers from USAC and Badger [Midget Auto Racing Association], and guys in the Rocky Mountain Midget Association, guys from USAC Sprint Cars and Silver Crown Cars and the World of Outlaws, all the best in dirt open-wheel racing. Those drivers are all at one place for the weekend, and when you've got [all those] guys competing for just the 24 starting spots in the A-Main, you have some of the best racing that you're going see all year all in one week at the Chili Bowl.
USAC Triple Crown winner Dave Darland said, "You've got guys from all over the world. New Zealand, Australia, NASCAR, NHRA, Indy Cars -- you know, there's just all sorts of different competition there, all sorts of different levels of drivers."
List of A-Main Winners
The A-Main feature was originally a 50-lap main event. In 2012, following a family domestic violence incident that killed driver Donnie Ray Crawford III, who was participating in the event and was leaving for the venue to participate in Saturday's races when the incident occurred, and was to have attended the University of Oklahoma the next week, the race was expanded to 55 laps (his car number). Drivers with multiple wins include five-time winner Sammy Swindell, Sammy's son Kevin Swindell with four wins, three-time winner Christopher Bell, and two-time winners Dan Boorse, Tony Stewart, Cory Kruseman and Rico Abreu.  The winning driver wins a trophy dubbed the "Golden Driller" after the 76-foot (23 m) statue outside the building.
- 2020 Kyle Larson
- 2019 Christopher Bell (3)
- 2018 Christopher Bell (2)
- 2017 Christopher Bell
- 2016 Rico Abreu (2)
- 2015 Rico Abreu
- 2014 Bryan Clauson
- 2013 Kevin Swindell (4)
- 2012 Kevin Swindell (first 55 lap race) (3)
- 2011 Kevin Swindell (2)
- 2010 Kevin Swindell
- 2009 Sammy Swindell (5)
- 2008 Damion Gardner
- 2007 Tony Stewart (2)
- 2006 Tim McCreadie
- 2005 Tracy Hines
- 2004 Cory Kruseman
- 2003 Dan Boorse (2)
- 2002 Tony Stewart
- 2001 Jay Drake
- 2000 Cory Kruseman
- 1999 Dan Boorse
- 1998 Sammy Swindell (4)
- 1997 Billy Boat
- 1996 Sammy Swindell (3)
- 1995 Donnie Beechler
- 1994 Andy Hillenburg
- 1993 Dave Blaney
- 1992 Sammy Swindell (2)
- 1991 Lealand McSpadden
- 1990 Johnny Heydenreich
- 1989 Sammy Swindell
- 1988 Scott Hatton
- 1987 Rich Vogler
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