Abreu Wins Wednesday’s Chili Bowl Qualifying Preliminary Night Feature

Rico Abreu passed Jason McDougal on lap 14, then held off a late charge from Kevin Thomas Jr. to win Wednesday’s Hard Rock Casino Qualifying Night at the 36th annual Lucas Oil Chili Bowl Nationals. Blake Hahn finished third to give Toyota two of the top three finishers on the night.

The victory is the third straight for a Toyota driver in the first three nights of qualifying and marks the seventh preliminary feature win for Abreu in the last eight years. With the win, the two-time Chili Bowl champ will advance directly to Saturday’s A Main feature event.

After starting the race from the inside of row two, Abreu fell back to fifth early before making his move back up through the field. After taking over the second spot, he would eventually throw a slider at McDougal in turn two to take over the top spot. The two-time Chili Bowl champion had to fight off a number of challenges the rest of the way but held on for the win.

Hahn started the race from the eighth position and climbed into the top five early on his way to the podium. He will open Saturday’s event in the B Main.

Also earning top-10 finishes on the night were Brad Sweet in sixth and Chance Crum in eighth – each will start in the B Mains on Saturday. Overall, seven Toyotas advanced to the night’s A Main, with Dominic Gordon finishing 12th, Taylor Reimer was 18th and Robert Dalby came home in 23rd.

This year’s Lucas Oil Chili Bowl Nationals features 395 entries – each fighting for one of the 24 openings in Saturday night’s A Main feature event.  Qualifying continues for each of the next two nights. 



Rico Abreu: “The track slowed down and got pretty technical. I just focused on minimizing my mistakes. All in all, the balance of my Rowdy Energy Toyota was pretty good. I knew that the top was eventually going to slow down, and the bottom would come in. Any time you put yourself in this position in this event for Saturday, it’s pretty special. I really get a kick out of our Keith Kunz Motorsports team getting the sensation of winning with some new crew members this year.”

Blake Hahn: “Being up here (in the top three) was really our goal for tonight. I feel I made a few mistakes early on and had to fight my way back up to the top. I just focused on hitting my marks and late we put ourselves in a position to challenge for the win if anyone made a mistake.”


Toyota Wednesday Results


Rico Abreu

A Main – 1st

Blake Hahn

A Main – 3th

Brad Sweet

A Main – 6th

Chance Crum

A Main – 8th

Dominic Gordon

A Main – 12th

Taylor Reimer

A Main – 18th

Robert Dalby

A Main – 23rd

Ryan Timms

B Main – 6th

Tyler Thomas

B Main – 8th

Jonathan Shafer

B Main – 11th

Landon Simon

B Main – 16th

Mark Chisholm

C Main – 6th

Danny Wood

C Main – 9th

Chad Frewaldt 

D Main – 4th