Written By: Lucas Halbert - Grassroots Racing News / Mounce/Stout Motorsports
Jay Mounce and Gavin Stout are bringing more cars to the Lucas Oil Chili Bowl Nationals than ever before. Last year the team raised the bar and nearly made the main event on Saturday night, the driver who them took that far, Chase McDermand, returns. Can he get them over the hump or will it be another driver? With a little help from RAMS Racing, Mounce/Stout Motorsports is hosting drivers from coast to coast. Get to know all eight drivers that will will be singing around the Tulsa Expo Center in just a few days.
- 00G Braedon Enos (Red Bluff, California) -
Making his debut next week is Braedon Enos. The Red Bluff, California driver ran with the Red Bluff Outlaws during the winter and made four Wingless Sprint Car Series starts at Southern Oregon Speedway.
For the first time he will be taking on a mighty Midget in arguably the toughest race in the world. Enos believes his experiences will help him on the tight Tulsa Expo Raceway. “Running the Outlaw Kart at places like Red Bluff will come into play when being comfortable with racing with no room. My Non-Wing Sprint Car background will help me on corner entry. I should feel somewhat normal letting the back end of the car come around, and really pitching it into the corner; that will hopefully help me point straight off.” Braedon’s preliminary night is Tuesday.
- 01C Carson Sousa (Red Bluff, California) -
Carson Sousa has thrown his hat in the ring for a Golden Driller for the third time in his career. The Red Bluff Outlaw Kart driver’s best Chili Bowl Nationals came in 2021 when he made it to an E-Main on Saturday afternoon. Last year, Sousa had a rough go around the 1/5th mile bullring, at one point hanging in the fence on his preliminary night; he settled for a J-Main result on the final day of competition.
Carson hopes the bad luck disappears this year as he hops back in a Mounce/Stout Motorsports midget for the first time since USAC’s West Coast swing in 2021. “I’m looking forward to teaming up with Mounce/Stout to hopefully redeem myself from last year’s incident. I’ve put last year behind me and I am coming into this Chili Bowl with a positive attitude to hopefully turn some heads and get something out of it.”
- 4A Kyle Steffens (St. Charles, Missouri) -
For the first time since 2014 Kyle Steffens will be a competitor at the Lucas Oil Chili Bowl Nationals. Steffens has competed in the Chili Bowl four times, with a best finish in an E-Main on Saturday (2014). Kyle is a UMP Modified regular on the bullrings on Illinois, and his home state of Missouri. He was able to claim three Modified wins in 2022, and made a trio of USAC Silver Crown starts; picking up a Top 10 for the second straight year at the mile long Illinois State Fairgrounds in Springfield.
In preparation for the Chili Bowl, Steffens competed in the Junior Knepper 55 in the Southern Illinois Center. The St. Charles, Missouri driver won his heat race and finished 20th in the 55-lap main event aboard the RAMS Racing - Mounce/Stout - Spike - Stanton W9 powered #4A. Kyle’s preliminary night is on Thursday, watch live on FloRacing.
- 7G Gavin Miller (Monrovia, Indiana) -
Moving up through the ranks, and making his Chili Bowl debut is Gavin Miller. 16-year-old Miller, spent most of 2022 making select National Midget starts with Keith Kunz Motorsports. Gavin made eleven feature starts, and picked up 6 Top 10’s, with 2 Top 5’s; his two best finishes came at Davenport Speedway (IA), and I-44 Riverside Speedway (OK) where he placed fifth.
While Miller dipped his toes in Midgets, most of his success has came in Micro Sprints. Across the two main NOW600 Micro Sprint divisions (Stock Non-Wing & Winged A-Class), Gavin racked up 4 Wins, 13 Top 5’s, 19 Top 10’s, in 25 Feature Starts. In the $10,000 to win 600cc Non-Wing World Championship at Circus City Speedway (IN), Miller finished fourth. He will take to the Tulsa Expo Raceway for practice on Sunday, and his preliminary night is on Thursday.
- 23P Preston Lattomus (Lewes, Delaware) -
Pitching it into the Chili Bowl Nationals for the first time is Delaware’s Preston Lattomus. The 16-year-old moved from Micro Sprints to 360 Sprint Cars in 2022 and saw success. He won with the USAC East Coast Sprint Car Series and finished 6th in points in his rookie campaign. While Lattomus does not have experience in a dirt Midget, in 2019 he competed with the USAC East Coast Midgets (D2 Pavement), winning once and never missing the Top 10 in nine starts. Preston rolls down the ramp to race on Tuesday.
- 40M Chase McDermand (Springfield, Illinois) -
Chase McDermand’s first year running full-time on the National Midget trail went as well as he could have hoped. His 2022 started off with a personal best B-Main appearance at the Chili Bowl Nationals, followed up with summer success by winning three POWRi National Midget events and claiming POWRi National Midget Rookie of the Year honors. McDermand enters the 2023 Chili Bowl looking to build off a strong summer to solidify his name as a Tulsa Expo Center contender. Chase’s preliminary night is Friday.
- 40S Steven Snyder Jr. (Rising Sun, Maryland) -
It didn’t matter where Steven Snyder Jr raced in 2022, he was a contender in his #21 Hyper Racing 600cc Micro Sprint. 17-year-old Snyder Jr claimed a preliminary night win at Christopher Bell’s Micro Mania, won Hyper Racing 600 Speedweek in Pennsylvania, and then capped off the year by cashing in on $10,000 at Millbridge Speedway.
Chase McDermand has placed Steven in his Spike Chassis, Stanton SR-11 powered #40s in a joint venture by McDermand and Mounce/Stout. This year’s upcoming Chili Bowl Nationals will be Snyder’s second, last year being his first where he made it to a J-Main on Saturday afternoon. Steven Snyder Jr will be the first Mounce/Stout driver to hit the track, his preliminary night is Monday.
- 55C Angelo Cornet (Willows, California) -
Angelo Cornet will be making his first Chili Bowl Nationals appearance. The California native picked up Factory QRC Perpetual Trophy Night with the Red Bluff Outlaws (RBO) in February. After placing fifth in RBO points in 2021, Cornet sits in eighth currently for 2022.
Angelo, a student at Chico State, is looking forward to his first Chili Bowl, “I am super excited to roll down the ramp for the first time at the Chili Bowl! I’m so grateful for this opportunity to come out and compete with the best of the best!” Cornet’s preliminary night is Wednesday evening, alongside his Mounce/Stout teammate and Red Bluff Outlaws competitor, Carson Sousa.
By: Lucas Halbert