Kyle Larson had to start from the tail following the changes made yesterday to his No.42 Chevy.
Nevertheless, he started slow and steady before taking a quick dip on Lap 16 at pit road for only right side tires & fuel.
By the time Corey LaJoie opened up the first caution on Lap 20, Larson had made up lost time to 15th.
Larson patiently made his way into the Top 10 towards the end of Stage 1 as he came home in P8.
He needed a track bar adjustment for some assistance during the break.
From there, he restarted in 23rd with some other drivers staying out on the track.
Likewise, from the previous stage, Larson continued to stick by his strategy for a quickie visit in pit road for fuel only on Lap 74.
Larson stayed inside the Top 5-7 mark for the rest of this stanza before he finished 15th at the halfway mark.
Larson still needs the trackbar treatment during the next break as he began the final stage in 19th.
Through the first half, Larson battled from the mid-pack row to returning inside the Top 10 by the debris caution on Lap 173.
Although, Larson had a problem with the left rear tire seven laps later where he spun off.
But he remained persistent, went back from square one and avoided wrecks to stay in the game.
Even though he picked up some damage on the way, Larson became one of the lead lap drivers until the end of the race.
And he had done it when Larson steered his No.42 Chevy home at P7.
Well, Kyle Larson’s happy to kick off 2019 with a decent Top 10 result.
Yes, this No.42 Chevy may not have the fastest car despite getting involved in yellows three times.
But Larson kept faith with his game plan all race long, and all he has to do is survive.
It’s the only way to escape from the big crashes so he can have a shot for more points in the bag available.
There he is after the race sitting 7th in the Drivers’ Standings knowing Larson can do better in the weeks to come.
What’s next for Larson is to match the No.42 Chevy’s strength towards the Joe Gibbs Toyotas.
Like Hamlin who finished 2018 winless & ended it today, Larson can end his this tiresome streak too.
It will need a speedy race car without going tight or loose to help Larson move forward & get into victory lane.
That way Larson will showcase his best talents on the race track & prove why 2019 can be his best season.
One race down, 35 events to go as Larson moves back home in NC tomorrow before traveling to Atlanta a few days later.
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