TALLADEGA, Ala – Kyle Larson’s bad luck strikes again in Sunday’s GEICO 500 at the Talladega Superspeedway. Its been 12 races since the Chip Ganassi Racing driver last finished in the top five. Furthermore, its been 57 races since he’s last won.
When Larson won the regular season finale in 2017, he looked like all the hype surrounding him had finally came to fruition. The California native had just won his fourth race of the season to go along with having 11 top two finishes in the first 26 races that year. In the 57 races since, Larson has finished in the top two just seven times, all runner-ups.
His No. 42 Chevrolet had the most speed in it among the Chevrolet camp in 2018. He just didn’t have the end of the season that Chase Elliott had. To start 2019 off with, he finished seventh in the Daytona 500 and led 150 laps in the second race in Atlanta. Unfortunately, a costly mistake on pit road cost him a win as he finished 12th.
His season has been all downhill from that moment on.
Larson, had an early race problem the next week in Vegas and finished 12th again. He then finished sixth a week later in Phoenix and 12th for a third time in four week at Fontana.
In his last five races, Larson has finished – 18th, 39th, 19th, 37th and 24th respectively.
He cut a tire two weeks ago in Richmond and had to pit. His crew didn’t get the sheet metal away from his tires good enough and a few laps later, he cut another tire and crashed. He finished last that night.
On Sunday, he was involved in a frightening last lap crash at the Talladega Superspeedway, where his car got airborne before making contact with the inside SAFER barrier on the backstretch. While in the air and hitting the wall, Larson’s car started to tumble end over end down the backstretch.
Luckily, he was able to walk away. Unluckily, it was his ninth finish outside of the top 10 in his last 11 starts.
“Initially I thought I was going to hit the inside wall and right before I got there, it started to lift,” said Larson after the scary crash. “That was probably the longest flip I’ve ever had. I just didn’t know if it would ever stop. I knew I was flipping and was just hoping I wouldn’t get any closer to the catchfence. It was a little bit scary, but I’m all right. Thanks to the fab shop at Chip Ganassi Racing for building safe race cars. Like I said, it was scary, but I’m just thankful I’m okay.”