The 2022 Lucas Oil Chili Bowl Nationals presented by General Tire are here. In other words, it’s time for the Super Bowl of midget racing.
Contested annually on the quarter-mile dirt oval known as Tulsa Expo Raceway inside the SageNet Center at Tulsa’s Expo Square in Oklahoma, the Chili Bowl is the hottest auto race in the cold of winter. The event’s prestige has only grown since its inception in 1987.
The 2022 Chili Bowl marks the 36th running of a race that has been dominated by NASCAR national series drivers over the last several years.
Kyle Larson, the 2021 NASCAR Cup Series champion, will look for his third consecutive Chili Bowl A-Main win in 2022; he won the main event in both 2020 and 2021.
If Larson were to win the Chili Bowl in 2022, he would accomplish what fellow NASCAR Cup Series driver Christopher Bell did from 2017-19, when he won three consecutive A-Main events in Tulsa.
Larson and Bell are two of nine NASCAR Cup Series drivers (current or former) who are featured on a record-setting entry list for the 2022 Chili Bowl.
Below is everything to know about the 2022 Chili Bowl, including the TV schedule, a record-breaking entry list and the list of winners over the event’s 35-year history.
What TV channel is the Chili Bowl on in 2022?
The majority of the 2022 Chili Bowl Nationals will be shown live on FloRacing, the new streaming home for all NASCAR Roots action. FloRacing’s coverage captures all five qualifying nights from Monday, Jan. 10 through Friday, Jan. 15.
MAVTV Motorsports Network will show Saturday’s final feature events, beginning with the evening’s opening ceremonies at 7 p.m. ET / 6 p.m. CT (local).
Below is the breakdown of the TV and live streaming schedule for the 2022 Chili Bowl.
Chili Bowl 2022 dates, TV schedule
|Date||Event||TV channel||Live stream||Racing start time|
|Monday, Jan. 10||Cummins, Inc. Qualifying Night plus the VIROC; Vacuworx Invitational Race of Champions||N/A||FloRacing||7 p.m. ET / 6 p.m. CT|
|Tuesday, Jan. 11||Warren CAT Qualifying Night||N/A||FloRacing||6 p.m. ET / 5 p.m. CT|
|Wednesday, Jan. 12||Hard Rock Casino Tulsa Qualifying Night||N/A||FloRacing||6 p.m. ET / 5 p.m. CT|
|Thursday, Jan. 13||John Christner Trucking Qualifying Night||N/A||FloRacing||6 p.m. ET / 5 p.m. CT|
|Friday, Jan. 14||Driven2SaveLives Qualifying Night||N/A||FloRacing||6 p.m. ET / 5 p.m. CT|
|Saturday, Jan. 15||Lucas Oil Championship Feature Events||MAVTV Motorsports Network||FloRacing (Up to D-Main); MAVTV Plus (C, B and A-Mains)||11 a.m. ET / 10 a.m. CT (Alphabet Soup Feature Races); 7 p.m. ET / 6 p.m. CT (Opening Ceremonies for C, B and A-Mains)|
— FloRacing (@FloRacing) December 17, 2021
Chili Bowl 2022 entry list
Both Larson and Bell, winners of the last five A-Main features in the Chili Bowl, are entered in the 2022 event. They are part of a record-breaking entry list.
As of Jan. 3, the still-growing entry list for the 2022 Chili Bowl had reached 380 drivers. The previous record for entries was 372, set ahead of the 2017 Chili Bowl.
Larson and Bell are two of nine NASCAR Cup Series drivers — current or former — included on the 2022 Chili Bowl entry list (more on those later). Chase Elliott, the 2020 Cup Series champion, is among them.
The entry list also includes a handful of drivers from the Xfinity and Truck Series, ARCA Menards Series, Whelen Modified Tour, Advance Auto Parts Weekly Series and every other corner of auto racing, including IndyCar (Conor Daly).
The complete entry list for the 2022 Chili Bowl can be viewed here.
— Chili Bowl Nationals (@cbnationals) December 20, 2021
Chili Bowl results: List of A-Main winners
Two drivers — Larson and Bell — have won the last five A-Mains at the Chili Bowl, the week’s feature event.
Legendary sprint car driver Sammy Swindell, a three-time World of Outlaws champion, holds the record with five Chili Bowl A-Main victories (1989, 1992, 1996, 1998, 2009). He is entered again in 2022.
Swindell’s son Kevin ranks second in Chili Bowl A-Main victories with four (all in a row from 2010-14), though injuries sustained in a 2015 crash ended his driving career.
Below is the complete list of Chili Bowl winners from 1987-2021.
|Year||Chili Bowl A-Main winner|
NASCAR drivers in the 2022 Chili Bowl
Larson, Bell and Elliott are three of six active NASCAR Cup Series drivers entered in the 2022 Chili Bowl. Chase Briscoe, Alex Bowman and Ricky Stenhouse Jr. also will compete on the quarter-mile dirt track in Tulsa.
— FloRacing (@FloRacing) January 5, 2022
Larson has two wins, five top fives and seven top 10s in 10 feature races at the Chili Bowl. Among active Cup Series drivers, only Bell has more, with three wins in eight feature races.
Briscoe has just one championship feature start; he finished 22nd in 2017. Stenhouse has a pair of top-10 finishes in seven appearances in the A-Main at the Chili Bowl. Both Bowman and Elliott will be looking to reach the championship event for the first time in 2022.
Yeley has three top fives in eight feature races at the Chili Bowl. Kahne has one top 10 in seven such starts. Newman has one E-Main victory (2020) but has never competed in the A-Main feature.
Where is the 2022 Chili Bowl?
The location of the Chili Bowl is part of what makes the annual event so special.
Each January, a carefully constructed quarter-mile dirt oval graces the floor of the SageNet Center at the River Spirit Expo Center in Tulsa, Oklahoma. The temporary indoor circuit is known as Tulsa Expo Raceway.
The same dirt used for the inaugural Chili Bowl in 1987 forms the track each year.
“The Chili Bowl’s key ingredient is the clay which once covered the adjacent fairgrounds,” the event’s website reads. “Without sun or wind to harm it, the indoor garden (roughly a quarter-mile circle) is heavily saturated so that the boldest dirt track artists of our time can truly shine.”
#TrackBuild2022 Day 8.
▪Infield and Track are taking shape.
▪Pipe is buried for scoring, audio, and video.
▪Fence and Cable are stretched.
▪Pits are next on the agenda. pic.twitter.com/COfaFUqppg
— Chili Bowl Nationals (@cbnationals) December 19, 2021
Located outside the Tulsa Expo Center is the famous golden driller statue, a massive figure depicting an oil worker.
That’s why the winner of the Chili Bowl leaves with a Golden Driller, one of the most coveted trophies in short track racing.
Ladies and Gentlemen, he has arrived. pic.twitter.com/fmZ60f3x7o
— Chili Bowl Nationals (@cbnationals) January 5, 2022
Chili Bowl format
Below is the 2022 Chili Bowl format as outlined on ChiliBowl.com.
Qualifying Nights (Monday-Friday)
- Drivers draw for heat racing starting position at 2 p.m. at chalkboard each day
- The driver who draws lowest number will start on the pole of Heat 1, second lowest number on the pole of Heat 2, etc.
- Number of heats decided by number of cars – 7-10 cars per heat race (8 Laps)
- Advancement from heat race to features is based upon passing points earned in heat race and qualifying races. Passing points are based upon car starting position when the yellow light goes out prior to the initial start of the heat or qualifying race.
C Mains/Qualifying Races/B Mains/A Main
- The 40 drivers earning the most passing points advance to Four “A” Qualifying Races; drivers in passing points positions 41-68 will go to two C Main races. The two C Main races will have 16 cars 12 laps in length.
- The top four cars in each C Main race will advance to the back of the B Main races, going 15 laps. (Top four from first C Main to back of first B Main, top four from second C Main to back of second B main)
- The lineup of each “A” Qualifying race will include an inversion of six cars. The top 24 cars in passing points will make the inversion. (The top point driver will start on row 3 of the first qualifying race, the No. 2 driver on row 3 of the second qualifying race, etc.)
- The four qualifying races will have 10 cars each with the top 16 in combined passing points from the heats and Qualifying races advancing to the A Main.
- The balance of the cars (24) from the “A” qualifying races will advance to two 16 car B Mains. The top four in each B Main will advance to the A Main, going 30 laps.
- There will be 24 drivers in each Preliminary Night A Feature
- The top two drivers in the Preliminary A qualify for Saturday’s A Main.
Saturday Night Features
The lineup for the top 10 cars in the A feature will be determined through the Pizza Express Chili Bowl Pole Dash.
The five A feature winners will draw 1-5, followed by the five drivers who finished second drawing 6-10 to seed the Pole Dash.
Pole Dash Procedure
- Each of the races will have four cars and be four laps.
- Preliminary Night Winners will draw for positions 1st – 5th, Runner up will draw 6th – 10th
- First Race will be drivers who draw 7th – 10th, lined up in that order. Top 2 will advance.
- Second Race, front row will be drivers who draw 5th & 6th, with the two drivers moving on from the first race in Row 2 (Winner inside, 2nd outside).
- Third Race front row will be drivers who draw 3rd & 4th, with the two drivers moving on from the second race in Row 2 (Winner inside, 2nd outside).
- Fourth Race front row will be drivers who draw 1st & 2nd, with the two drivers moving on from the third race in Row 2 (Winner inside, 2nd outside).
- Winner of the fourth race will earn the pole in Saturday’s A-Feature.
(Note: All positions in races other than Saturday’s A-Main will line up upon the original draw of the winners prior to the pole dash. Example: If the Friday winner draws No. 1, the Wednesday winner draws No. 2, Tuesday winner draws No. 3, Thursday winner draws No. 4 and the Monday winner draws No. 5, all positions in all races will be based on Friday first, Wednesday second, Tuesday third, Thursday fourth and Monday fifth.)
- Seven drivers will advance from each B main to the A for a total of 24 cars with Provisionals set aside for the defending Chili Bowl Champion and previous year’s VIROC Winner should they not transfer.
B Mains (20 Laps)
- There will be two B mains, with 20 drivers in each B main.
- Drivers finishing in their Preliminary A feature in position 3-8 will qualify for the B mains
- Five drivers will advance from each C main to the B mains (1st C to 1st B, 2nd C to 2nd B)
C Mains (15 Laps)
- There will be two C Mains, with 20 drivers in each C
- Drivers finishing in their Preliminary A feature positions 9-14 will qualify for the C mains
- Five drivers will advance from each D main to the C Mains
D Mains (15 Laps)
- There will be two D mains, with 20 drivers in each D
- Drivers finishing in their Preliminary A feature positions 15-20 will qualify for the D mains
- Five drivers will advance from each E main to the D mains
E Mains (15 Laps)
- There will be two E mains, with 20 drivers in each E
- Drivers finishing in their Preliminary night A features 21-24 and B features 5th will qualify for the E mains
- Five drivers will advance from each F main to the E mains
F Mains (15 Laps)
- There will be two F mains, with 20 drivers in each F
- Drivers finishing in their Preliminary night B features in positions 6-8 will qualify for the F mains
- Five drivers will advance from each G main to the F mains
G Mains (10 Laps)
- There will be two G mains, with 16 drivers in each G
- Drivers finishing in their Preliminary night B features in positions 9-10 will qualify for the G mains
- Five drivers will advance from each H main to the G mains
H Mains (10 Laps)
- There will be two H mains, with 16 drivers in each H
- Drivers finishing in their Preliminary night B features in positions 11-12 will qualify for the H mains
- Six drivers will advance from each I main to the H mains
I Mains (10 Laps)
- There will be two I mains, with 16 drivers in each I
- Drivers finishing in their Preliminary night B features in positions 13-14 will qualify for the I mains
- Six drivers will advance from each J main to the I mains
J Mains (10 Laps)
- There will be two J mains, with 16 drivers in each J
- Drivers finishing in their Preliminary night B features in positions 15-16 will qualify for the I mains
- Six drivers will advance from each K main to the I mains
K Mains (10 Laps)
- There will be two K mains, with 16 drivers in each K
- Drivers finishing in their Preliminary night C features in positions 5-6 will qualify for the K mains
- Six drivers will advance from each L main to the L mains
L Mains (10 Laps)
- There will be two L Mains, with 16 drivers in each L
- Drivers finishing in their Preliminary night C feature in position 7-8 will qualify for the L Mains
- Six drivers will advance from each M main to the L mains
M Mains (10 Laps)
- There will be two M Mains, with 16 drivers in each M
- Drivers finishing in C feature positions 9-10 will qualify for the M Mains
- Six drivers will advance from each N main to the M mains
N Mains (10 Laps)
- There will be two N Mains, with 16 drivers in each N
- Drivers finishing in C feature positions 11-12 will qualify for the N Mains
- Six drivers will advance from each O main to the N mains
O Mains (10 Laps)
- There will be two O Mains, with number of cars TBA
- Drivers finishing in C feature positions 13 on back will qualify for the O Main.
- Note that cars that started will be given priority over cars that did not take the green flag in a C feature.