BLOOMINGTON, Ind. — official release — Christopher Bell earned his sixth POWRi Lucas Oil National Midget Series victory of the season and extended his point lead in the POWRi Midget World Championship Friday night at Bloomington Speedway.
Bell sat outside the front row next to teammate and pole sitter Tanner Thorson, who took command at the drop of the green flag, putting some distance between himself and Bell until a caution for the piled-up cars in turns three and four bunched the field back up.
When the field took the green again, Bell was able to power past Thorson in his Keith Kunz/Curb-Agajanian Motorsports’ Toyota-powered Bullet. Leading the remaining 26 laps, Bell went relatively unchallenged by second place finisher and defending Chili Bowl champion Bryan Clauson.
“Keith gave me an awesome car,” said Bell. “We got the lead early and just tried to not make any mistakes. It was a little tricky down there. I just had to be real patient to make sure I didn’t throw the nose or get it loose.”
Clauson charged through the pack in his Joe Dooling/Rusty Kunz Esslinger-powered Spike from his ninth place starting position to crack the top five on lap nine. Clauson battled with Michael Pickens for fourth until he was able to overtake him on lap 12.
Clauson then set his sights on the top three, which he inherited from Danny Stratton when Stratton’s Esslinger-powered Beast lost its left rear wheel entering turn three on lap 24. Not settling for the final place upon the podium, Clauson took second from Thorson on lap 25, but was unable to make a move on Bell.
“It was a good night for us, just had a little too much ground to make up starting ninth,” explained Clauson. “It was just a good night overall for the team.”
“We started on the pole in the main and we got a good jump on (teammate Christopher) Bell,” explained Thorson. “From there on, I think we were a little bit too good in the beginning, but it shaped out to be alright and we got a podium out of it. I can’t thank my guys and all my sponsors enough.”
Kevin Thomas Jr. and Zach Daum rounded out the top five.