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Kyle Larson Struggling to Defend NASCAR Championship

Hendricks Motorsports Driver Kyle Larson has not found the success in 2022 that he had just one year ago, en route to winning the NASCAR Drivers Championship in his return to the Cup Series. 

In 2021 Kyle Larson won 10 out of 36 races while finishing with 20 top-five, and 26 top-ten finishes. "Young Money" Larson started on the pole twice in 2021 and led a whopping 2,581 laps during his championship season. 

Fast forward to the halfway point of 2022 and Kyle Larson has one win in 18 starts in the number five Hendricks Motorsports Car. Kyle has found himself in the top five 8 times so far in 2022 and has ten top-ten finishes to date. The Elk Grove, CA native is not far from his 2021 pace but has not been able to close out the wins in the final stages in 2022.

Larson is also running a part-time schedule in the XFINITY Nascar Series for Hendricks Motorsports, he drives the #17 Hendricks Motorsports sponsored car. So far in 2022 Kyle Larson has only run one race in the Xfinity series finishing second to Ty Gibbs at Road America which was a very entertaining ending to the race, both drivers battling it out on the road course gave fans a thrill.

The dirt track is where Kyle Larson shines no matter what type of car he strays to. He has cut back his dirt racing schedule compared to 2021 and years prior. He has run 25 sprint car races in 2022, taking home the $25,000 payday at Lenerville speedway most recently. He has also run the Dirt Late Model series and his Midget Non-Winged Sprint Car. 

A lot of time has been spent with his son who has recently begun his racing career with the guidance of his dad every step of the way. Larson dedicates a lot of his off time to his son and beginning his career in the dirt. Owen Larson is Kyle Larson’s son and he is seen duelling on the dirt with former NASCAR racers Clint Bowyer’s son Cash Bowyer and Kyle Busch’s son Brexton Busch regularly. The future of dirt racing and racing, in general, is very bright.

Back to Young Money Kyle Larson, he still has half of the Nascar schedule remaining and can find himself contending for another championship in 2022, unlucky at times and just not enough left in the tank at the end of a few races has caused the number five car to fall short of multiple victories in 2022. A few of those races go in his favour and we are having an entirely different conversation.

Without a doubt, Larson is an extremely talented driver in any type of race car he climbs into. He continues to showcase his impressive skills with his "all gas" mentality as he regularly leaves it all on the race track in his attempt to take a checkered flag. A contender every time he is on the racetrack no matter where he starts or restarts the race, and entertaining to watch every weekend.

We will be blessed with plenty of excitement thanks to Kyle Larson for years come as he has the talent and skills to earn multiple championships in multiple racing series in the years ahead, the question will be how many he wins when he decides to call it a career. Despite the accolades, trophies and everything that comes with it, his driving style is a fan favourite everywhere he goes.

main image credit: Embed from Getty Images

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