“It Was a Game of Chicken”: William Byron Sparks New Rivalry With Teammate Kyle Larson After Describing the Crazy Last Lap Scenario at Phoenix

Published 03/13/2023, 11:52 AM EDT

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William Byron registered a late dramatic victory at the Phoenix Raceway on Sunday. Racing in his final season before retirement, Kevin Harvick looked on course to victory lane until the caution came into play. Byron seized his opportunity and recorded his second consecutive win in the NASCAR Cup Series. While it is great news for Hendrick Motorsports, something slightly more interesting went on between Byron and his teammate Kyle Larson.

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Both the Hendrick Motorsports drivers looked untouchable until Harvick drove past them with 44 laps remaining. But it was in the two laps of the over-time that the duo challenged each other intensely. What happened next was later explained in detail by Byron.

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William Byron and Kyle Larson establish a new rivalry after a late drama in Phoenix

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The over-time saw both Byron and Larson strongly compete, so much so that they were close to wrecking each other. Speaking at the press conference after the race, Byron was asked if the chances of wrecking concerned him during the race. To this, Byron said, “Yeah, I mean, in my situation having a win, him not having a win yet, like, I assumed he would be more aggressive.”

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He added, “But my counter was that I got a win, I’m going to do whatever I can, too. It was a game of chicken a little bit…Yeah, I don’t know how to answer that. I wasn’t really thinking through that situation. I was just kind of going wherever he was, trying to be a little bit better.”

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This certainly indicates some sort of rivalry but surely a healthy one from Hendrick Motorsports‘ perspective. Interestingly, Kyle Larson wasn’t the only Kyle bummed recently by William Byron.

Byron upsets Kyle Busch  despite joining his Truck Series team

Last week, it was confirmed that Byron will be running three races for Kyle Busch Motorsports in the NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series. While that should have been good news for owner Kyle Busch, there was something that bummed him out about itThe 25-year-old opted to drive at Bristol, Darlington, and North Wilkesboro for KBM. To this Rowdy said, “He stole one [race] of mine actually. I’m still bummed I don’t get to run at North Wilkesboro. But it will be nice to have an experienced driver again that can come over and continue to help evaluate and it not just be me.”

WATCH THIS STORY | “Kyle [Larson]’s Gonna Be So Bummed” – Danica Patrick Sympathizes With Hendrick Motorsports Champion After ‘Heartbreak’

Nevertheless, Byron is a valuable addition to KBM. More so, considering his stellar form this season. It would be interesting to see what more can he achieve with HMS, especially given the start he has got

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Written by:

Priyank Mithani

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Priyank Mithani is a NASCAR writer at Essentially Sports. Since completing his graduation, he has been pursuing a career in the Media & Entertainment industry. With a zeal to write creative and insightful content, he started his journey as a freelancer in 2018.
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Edited by:

Nischal Kandpal

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