“I made all my passes on the bottom in turns one and two and was running the top in three and four,” Thomas explained. “Tim McCreadie showed me his nose a couple of times. He was running the top and getting a good run out of two. The track was drying out low and I decided change my line and go to the top. I hit the cushion in the wrong spot, the car biked (onto two wheels) and I slammed down. It stalled the motor and I had a flat and I had to pull off.
“I was frustrated. I was in a transfer spot to make the A feature and made one mistake and it cost me. It would have been awesome to make the A feature and we were so close.”
The 18-year-old from Collinsville, Okla., finished 14th in the B feature his third Chili Bowl. Thomas finished ninth in the preliminary A feature on Wednesday to earn the starting spot in the B, one race from the championship feature.
Rico Abreu of Rutherford, Calif., won the Chili Bowl A feature. Saturday’s final event of the six-night event had 326 drivers entered.
Thomas departed Sunday for Australia to race in four POWRi Midget World Championship events, Jan 24-25 at Archerfield Speedway near Brisbane and Jan. 30-31 at Lucas Oil Lismore Speedway in New South Wales. He’ll also race in a Micro Sprint race in Perth before returning to the United States. It’s the first trip for Thomas to Australia and his second outside America. Thomas raced in a karting event in Canada in 2005 when he was nine.
“I’m looking forward to racing those drivers and looking forward to the trip,” Thomas said. “It’s going to be a really cool experience to be down there.”
Thomas will be driving a Esslinger-powered Stealth for car owner Scott Wilson in the POWRi Midget World Championship.
“It’s a (chassis-engine) package I’m familiar with,” Thomas said. “I’d like to get some top fives and contend for wins.”
In addition to being part of the POWRi Midget World Championship, which has already completed its events in New Zealand and has events later this year in America, the four Australian events crown the POWRi Australian Midget Series champion.
“It would be pretty cool to win the Australian championship,” Thomas said.
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Tyler Thomas public relations