The driver of the No. 5 Hendrick Motorsports Chevrolet Camaro has a well-earned reputation for staying calm. He doesn’t get worked up or take part in arguments like other NASCAR Cup Series drivers such as Chase Elliott or Kevin Harvick. Instead, Kyle Larson remembers important details to avoid these situations.
“I’m 5’6″, 135 pounds. I’m not going to get too wound up about anything,” Larson joked to reporters following his win at Bristol Motor Speedway on Saturday, Sept. 18. The six-race winner faced multiple questions about the on-track altercation between his teammate and Harvick that led to multiple arguments after the checkered flag waved. However, he did not take sides.
“I don’t have an opinion on that,” Elliott told reporters, per Bob Pockrass. “Yeah, I’m not sure. I mean, we all get upset at moments. Obviously, Kevin felt like it cost him the win, which it very well may have. He’s going to be upset. Rightfully so. Chase was upset. Yeah, I don’t know. I wasn’t part of it.”
Larson Remained Busy During the Arguments
The driver of the No. 5 HMS Chevrolet did not take part in the argument between Harvick and Elliott. Instead, he remained busy celebrating the win that added bonus points to his total. He took part in some burnouts to fire up the fans at Bristol, and then he headed over to NBC Sports to conduct his post-race interview.
“That was an awesome race,” Larson told NBC Sports while the crowd cheered. “It was so cool to be able to race there for the win. Obviously, Chase and Harvick got together, and Chase was upset and kind of held him up.”
Larson walked through the final laps to the finish line, explaining how he was able to pull a slide job to get ahead of Harvick. The maneuver mostly worked. Though Larson had to recover after his fellow driver tagged him from behind and made him partially lose control. He kept the No. 5 out of the wall and led for the final three laps to reach Victory Lane.
Larson Has an Early Advantage Heading Toward Vegas
With the win, Larson remains on top of the points standings. He entered the playoffs with a massive advantage after winning the regular-season championship. He then turned in strong performances while Denny Hamlin and Martin Truex Jr. won races at Darlington and Richmond to keep his spot.
The Round of 12 will begin with a race at Las Vegas Motor Speedway on Sept. 26, and Larson will enter the weekend 46 points above the cut line. He has a significant advantage over his other drivers and will have an opportunity to lock up his spot in the Round of Eight very quickly.
Truex is second in the standings at the start of the Round of 12, but he is only 16 points above the cutline. Hamlin and Ryan Blaney are tied for third at 11 points above the cutline. Kyle Busch is fifth at nine points to the positive.
Larson will enter the race at Las Vegas as a favorite to lock up his second consecutive win. He has continued to fight for the checkered flag after locking up the regular-season championship, and he is also the most recent winner at the 1.5-mile oval.
The driver of the No. 5 won his first race of the season on March 7 after leading 103 of the 267 laps, holding off Brad Keselowski and Busch in the process. This victory secured Larson’s spot in the playoffs and served as a turning point in the 2021 season.