By Anthony Caruso III | Publisher
Kyle Larson was forced out of NASCAR in 2020. One year later, the Hendrick Motorsports driver is the Champion.
Larson, who was driving the HendrickCars.com entry, won the Cup Series Championship Race at Phoenix Raceway on Sunday. He completed the 312-lap race in a little over three hours.
The 28-year-old, who began the race on the pole, won his 10thwin of the season. It is also his 16thCup Series win in his career. This was Larson’s first win since he won the Hollywood Casino 400 at Kansas Speedway on Oct. 24th.
“it was a little bit of an up-and-down race compared to the four of us,” Larson said after the race. “There was moments where I was like, maybe I’ve got a good enough car to win outright and there was times where I was definitely the fourth-best car. Definitely a team win. I’m honestly glad that it took our whole — I mean, it always takes your whole team, but in one race, Cliff, the engineers making the adjustments on the car to keep us in the game, my pit crew is the main reason why we won that race, and I’m sure somewhere in there I made some good decisions, too.
He led 107 laps en route to the win. Larson beat out BassProShops.com driver Martin Truex Jr., FedEx Express driverDenny Hamlin, and NAPA Auto Parts Chase Elliott to win the Championship.
Truex Jr. finished second and Hamlin, who has never won a championship, finished third. Elliott, who was the 2020 Cup Series champion, finished fifth.
“That was cool,” he said after receiving the championship ring from Jim France. “That was really cool. We were just at the barn before I came in here, and that place is rocking right now. Yeah, that was neat to get the championship ring presented to me.