Chip Ganassi Racing let go driver Kyle Larson earlier in the year, after he used a racial slur during a livestream event. According to a new report, he may have a new racing team soon.
Larson has performed well on the World of Outlaws Sprint Car Series, which he has competed in since his NASCAR suspension was handed down. He’s had an impressive string of wins throughout the summer, which could unlock a return to NASCAR despite the controversy surrounding him,.
“Although he hasn’t formally applied for reinstatement, he has talked with NASCAR about being reinstated and considering he has missed 24 races, that would appear to be much more than long enough for NASCAR to OK his return,” FOX Sports‘ Bob Pockrass reports. “The question is convincing sponsors and a manufacturer to bring him back for 2021.”
He believes that Hendrick Motorsports is the new favorite to give Kyle Larson an opportunity to return to the sport. He’s not alone in suggesting as much. Veteran driver Martin Truex Jr. said as much last week.
“He belongs in the Cup Series with the best drivers in the world.”
— Matt Mayer (@MatthewMayerCBS) September 10, 2020
“When the 2020 season started, everyone had Larson pegged to go to Stewart-Haas Racing, but industry executives indicate Hendrick Motorsports is the leader to put Larson in a car for 2021 while SHR appears focused on keeping Bowyer or elevating Chase Briscoe,” Pockrass adds. “Hendrick has a lot of sway with car manufacturers, and it certainly is conceivable that he could convince Chevrolet to not veto a Larson hire even if it doesn’t do a personal services deal as it would with most top drivers.”
The fact that Larson is looking at reinstatement while Bubba Wallace also hits the open market makes for a very interesting dynamic in the racing world. He announced that he is leaving Richard Petty Motorsports last week as well.
Of course, this is all dependent upon Larson continuing to show contrition for his use of the N-word on that broadcast back in April. His apology at the time:
“I feel very sorry for my family, my friends, my partners, the NASCAR community. And especially the African-American community,” Larson said. “I understand the damage is probably irreparable. I’ll own up to that. But I just wanted to let you all know how sorry I am. And I hope everybody is staying safe during these crazy times.”
Hopefully he continues to work to make things right, especially if he is granted another opportunity in NASCAR.
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