TULSA, Okla. - Michael Kofoid did something on Tuesday night that few people have been able to do recently. He bested Kyle Larson at Oklahoma’s Tulsa Expo Raceway.
Breaking a four-year streak of Larson Chili Bowl Nationals prelim night wins, Kofoid earned the win during Tuesday’s Warren CAT Qualifying Night.
Delivering Keith Kunz win No. 31 at the Tulsa Expo Raceway, the fight for the victory was nearly nonstop, as Kofoid chased defending Chili Bowl Nationals Champion Larson through the opening 24 laps.
Through a number of early race restarts due to cautions, Larson held Kofoid at bay each time. Kofoid was able to close on Larson in lapped traffic a few times, but the chance to make a move never presented itself.
“I was trying to stay close to him in traffic,” said Kofoid. “All the lappers were running their own race side by side, so you kind of had to pick through and be able to be there. The opportunity never really came in traffic like I thought, and the top side started getting really treacherous in three and four.”
Following a caution on lap 20, Kofoid dove low on the restart, but was unable to advance before caution lights came on again working lap 23. Back to lap 22, the pair traded lines at both ends of the raceway only to have the caution halt the action once more.
Taking the bottom for the final run, Kofoid powered to the lead off the second turn. Larson went back on the charge, and even cleared the nose of Kofoid’s car a couple of times. Each time, Kofoid was able to counter to maintain the point. From there, Kofoid drove on to take the victory by 1.738-seconds.
Larson held off a last lap challenge from Chris Windom for second. That locked Larson and Kofoid into Saturday night’s A-Feature.
Windom settled for third, with Jake Swanson moving fourth, and Thomas Meseraull fifth.
Kaylee Bryson, Jake Bubak, Jonathan Beason, Kyle Hones and Tim McCreadie rounded out the top 10.
Racing continues Wednesday with Hard Rock Hotel Casino Qualifying Night. For more information, visit ChiliBowl.com.
Lucas Oil Chili Bowl Nationals
Tulsa Expo Raceway – Tulsa, OK
Warren CAT Qualifying Night – January 11, 2022
1. 67-Michael Kofoid*
2. 01-Kyle Larson*
3. 89-Chris Windom
4. 55A-Jake Swanson
5. 7X-Thomas Meseraull
6. 71K-Kaylee Bryson
7. 27B-Jake Bubak
8. 8J-Jonathan Beason
9. 7U-Kyle Jones
10. 9T-Tim McCreadie
11. 45X-Roger Crockett
12. 73H-Hunter Schuerenberg
13. 19K-Riley Kreisel
14. 19B-Alex Bright
15. 15-Donny Schatz
16. 47-Zach Daum
17. 27-Briggs Danner
18. 29S-Hank Davis
19. 40-Colton Hardy
20. 7T-TJ Smith
21. 15H-Sam Hafertepe, Jr.
22. 3N-Jake Neuman
23. 96-Cody Brewer
24. 57W-Kaidon Brown-DNF
*Top 2 advance to Saturday’s A-Feature