HomeRacingKyle Larson wins second NASCAR All-Star Race – The Checkered Flag
Kyle Larson wins second NASCAR All-Star Race – The Checkered Flag
June 14, 2021
For the primary time in its 37-year historical past, the NASCAR All-Star Race passed off at Texas Motor Speedway. Sunday’s exhibition race, divided into six rounds, was stuffed with inversions and calculations that decided Kyle Larson was the brightest star. Larson held off Brad Keselowski within the last ten-lap spherical to win his second All-Star and for the third straight week.
Larson drew the pole to steer the sector of twenty-one; seventeen had been already locked into the race whereas 4—Ross Chastain, Tyler Reddick, Aric Almirola, and Fan Vote winner Matt DiBenedetto—certified by way of the All-Star Open earlier within the day.
As a part of the format, the race was cut up into six rounds with the primary 4 being fifteen laps every. It solely took one lap for a warning to wave when Christopher Bell bought sideways regardless of avoiding a spin. Kyle Busch took the lead for the restart and led earlier than Larson reclaimed the spot and drove off to the spherical win. The highest twelve was inverted to place Ryan Blaney on pole for the second spherical, and no lead modifications occurred within the spherical as he gained.
After pit stops, DiBenedetto grew to become the brand new chief and led six laps earlier than Alex Bowman started the Hendrick Motorsports run on the entrance earlier than wrapping it up with the spherical victory. HMS team-mate William Byron took the lead on lap 46 to start the fourth spherical and edged out Larson to win.
The fifth spherical was the longest at thirty laps and thus necessitated a cycle of green-flag stops. All 4 Hendrick drivers ran within the high 4 earlier than pitting collectively on lap 76, which allowed Keselowski to take the lead. On lap 79, Chastain practically spun after being tapped by Ryan Newman from behind however saved it; however, the warning was referred to as. Reigning All-Star winner Chase Elliott took the lead for the restart and claimed the spherical win.
The ultimate spherical ran for ten laps. Keselowski handed Elliott for first on lap 92, however misplaced his battle with Larson. Regardless of Keselowski’s efforts, he couldn’t catch Larson as he stormed off to his second profession All-Star win, an unofficial third straight race win, and technically his second consecutive All-Star victory (he gained in 2019 and missed 2020 attributable to suspension).
“It appears like operating second to the Hendrick automobiles proper now’s an accomplishment,” quipped Keselowski. Hendrick drivers have gained the final 4 factors races whereas a team-mate completed second in every. “They’re simply silly quick. I had him off flip 4 however they simply have a lot velocity. He simply motored proper again by me, like rattling!”
Along with claiming the $1 million prize cash, Larson is the primary driver to win the All-Star within the #5 since Terry Labonte in 1999. He’s additionally the primary driver not from the Elliott household to win the All-Star when it’s held outdoors of Charlotte Motor Speedway (Invoice Elliott gained at Atlanta in 1987 and Chase at Bristol in 2020).
“That second run there, we had been actually unhealthy, and I used to be like, ‘Man, we’re in hassle.’ I went backwards that spherical,” Larson advised FS1. “I used to be like, ‘We bought an uphill battle and didn’t think about seeing myself profitable this race immediately,’ however Cliff (Daniels, crew chief) and all people labored so laborious on this factor, made some good changes all through these second and third rounds and bought us in place.
“That final restart labored out precisely how I wanted it to. I needed Chase to not get an excellent run down the again. Fortunately I feel the #12 (Blaney) bought to his inside, and I simply shoved him down the again and he in all probability thought I used to be going to simply comply with him and I used to be like, ‘There’s bought to be sufficient grip the place we’d be operating for one nook.’ It was just a little slick up there however I used to be capable of get it and maintain him off from there. I can’t imagine it.”