Kyle Larson, pilot of the MAV TV and Toyota-powered A-Class Midget as well as a NASCAR Cup driver of the number five Chevrolet for Hendrick Motorsports in 2021, claimed his second Golden Driller Trophy in 13 years at the 2021 Chili Bowl Midget Nationals in January at the Tulsa Expo Raceway in Tulsa, Oklahoma. He started the race in second place, and after an early restart was able to take the lead, which he held for the remainder of the race.
It took 26 laps for Larson to encounter lap traffic among the field of screaming 300+ horsepower machines. He maneuvered his way through and put some distance and other drivers between himself and the second-place competitor.
After a few wrecks, which peppered the early stages of the race, Larson had a commanding lead. However, with the race winding down, you could feel the anticipation of the drivers. Their door-to-door aggression began to escalate as they pushed harder and braked later. The second-place driver put some pressure on Larson after the final two restarts to no avail as Larson pulled away. Efforts to get back to the pole position ended in spectacular crashes as cars flipped into the air and smashed into the fence above the wall sending parts like shrapnel across the track. None of the drivers were injured, but that did mean Larson took the win in the A-Feature final at the 2021 Chili Bowl.
“To get two of these feels awesome,” said Larson having received his second Chili Bowl trophy. “It was a different race than last year, but I’m just thankful to get the chance to race here. I think a lot of us thought maybe we wouldn’t get to run the Chili Bowl with the pandemic going on, so hats off to Emmett Hahn and the organizers. It’s the greatest event in the world, and I’m very lucky to be a part of it.”