NASCAR Analyst Makes an Unpopular Kyle Larson Claim Ahead of Season-Finale in Phoenix

Published 11/04/2021, 12:41 AM EDT
LAS VEGAS, NEVADA – SEPTEMBER 26: Kyle Larson, driver of the #5 Tarlton and Son Chevrolet, waves to fans during pre-race ceremonies prior to the NASCAR Cup Series South Point 400 at Las Vegas Motor Speedway on September 26, 2021 in Las Vegas, Nevada. (Photo by Meg Oliphant/Getty Images)

With nine wins under his belt, Kyle Larson has been in excellent form in the 2021 season. So, it would not be out of the realm of possibility to think that he is a title favorite. He has comfortably booked his season finale berth, but still continued his winning streak. However, some believe that he is still not the championship favorite.


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According to analyst Steve Letarte, “I don’t think, statistically, he is the favorite. It’s just because he has yet to prove that he can do it as a champion. This is really his first legitimate shot. He might prove me wrong, he might make me eat my words, but that would be fine. Kyle Larson has gone on record to say that he has been more successful now, because of his mental approach. He just enjoys racing, he goes out and drives.”

Letarte insisted that the Phoenix race and the championship race are two different beasts. He also does not know whether he will step up to the plate. The season finale at Phoenix is the race that forces drivers to go all out. Furthermore, Phoenix is the second biggest race of the year, after the Daytona 500.


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What else did he say about Kyle Larson?

He continued, “You’re not sure when you’re going to come back. I think the drivers may play it down. They may kind of deflect, but the main thing is, when they strap in on Sunday, they know this is a one shot opportunity. So the question is, how will Larson manage? There is no question, he is good enough. No question that his car is good enough. But being good enough and getting it done is two different things.”

Sep 26, 2021; Las Vegas, Nevada, USA; NASCAR Cup Series driver Kyle Larson (5) during the South Point 400 at Las Vegas Motor Speedway. Mandatory Credit: Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sportsky

One thing is for sure, it will be a no holds barred contest between the four contenders. Out of the four of them, only Denny Hamlin and Chase Elliott have won at Phoenix. In other words, Kyle Larson and Martin Truex Jr have their work cut out for them. Especially considering that there will be practice and qualifying for the race weekend.


Jeff Gordon Offers Sage Advice to Chase Elliott and Kyle Larson Ahead of Tense Season Finale at Phoenix

about 1 month ago

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Dhruv George

12331 articles

Dhruv George is a senior Motorsports author for EssentiallySports, having authored nearly 12000 articles spanning different sports like F1, NASCAR, Tennis, NFL, and eSports. He graduated with a PG Diploma in Journalism from the Xavier Institute of Communications. Dhruv has also conducted interviews with F1 driver Pierre Gasly and Moto2 rider Tony Arbolino.