Despite running the Top 10 most of the time, Aric Almirola’s incident at Turn 1 cost him the outcome he wanted at Pocono.
Larson now aims to improve his road course Cup expertise when he goes left & right once again at Watkins Glen International this Friday.
He started from 32nd with no problem moving up spots closer to the Top 15 mark in 16th.
En route to his first green flag pit stop, Larson would need an air pressure adjustment along with four tires & fuel to see how the No.42 Chevrolet reacts.
His later runs when he returned on the race track has helped Larson move four more spots to 12th at the end of the 1st stanza.
When he pitted during the stage break, Larson looked on to see what his No.42 car can do to try & break into the Top 10 mark.
So the No.42 crew added an X wedge adjustment before the restart where he ran the first half of Stage 2 in 11th.
Larson pitted again under green on Lap 75 for a quick change of tires and fuel before he stayed out under caution & finished the rest of this stage in 5th.
He’s aware of what some other drivers such as the Joe Gibbs Racers did when they changed their tactics & cycle back inside the Top 10.
His crew once again added the wedge adjustment to the No.42 car as Larson restarted 14th before the caution came out on Lap 120 Brad Keselowski lost control at Turn 2.
Larson’s crew chief Chad Johnston wanted to tweak his game up when Larson pitted under caution with the appropriate adjustments as he moved up as high as ninth.
He survived the next two cautions having seen Landon Cassill leaking fluid and Bubba Wallace’s heavy into the wall respectively.
But unfortunately, a series of hard-fought restarts & a temporary red flag halt has seen Larson crash in a massive blow before overtime.
Larson’s car still made it to his next stop when bandaging the damage from the incident.
However, the result isn’t indeed what Larson & the No.42 wanted to see out the race in 23rd.
2018 Gander Outdoors Loop Data Statistics
- Start: 32nd
- Middle: 15th
- Finish: 23rd
- Highest Position: 4th
- Lowest Spot: 33rd
- Average Run: 14th
- Pass Difference: 28
- Green Flag Passes: 108, Times Passed: 80
- Quality Passes: 37, 34.3%
- Fastest Lap: 2
- Top 15 Laps: 111, 67.7%
- Total Laps: 164
- Driver Rating: 76.3
Kyle Larson’s Watkins Glen Cup Record
He made four Cup appearances at the eight-turn 2.45-mile road course in New York.
Larson’s debut run at Watkins Glen performed outstanding where he finished 4th.
However, in his last three appearances, he finished mostly outside the Top 10 apart from finishing 12th in 2015.
- 4th, 2014
- 12th, 2015
- 29th, 2016
- 23rd, 2017
- 4 Starts
- 359 of 360 Laps Completed, 99.7%
- One Top 5 & 10, 25%
- Average Start: 8 & Finish: 12
- DNF: Zero
- Average Driver Rating: 82
Kyle Larson’s 2018 Cup Series Season So Far.
- 21 Races
- 5497 of 5872 Laps Completed, 93.6%
- 365 Laps Led
- Highest Starting Spot: 1st, May 2018 in Dover & June 2018 in Sonoma
- Best Finish: 2nd, March in Fontana, April in Bristol & June in Pocono
- Six Top 5, 28.6%
- 11 Top 10 finishes, 52.4%
- Average Start: 13.4 & Finish: 13.9
- DNFs: Three, Crash (Texas, Talladega & Daytona 2)
- He currently sits 8th in the Drivers’ Standings with 626 Points.
- 19th, Daytona 500
- 9th, Atlanta
- 3rd, Las Vegas
- 18th, Phoenix
- 2nd, Fontana
- 16th, Martinsville
- 36th, Texas
- 2nd, Bristol
- 7th, Richmond
- 40th, Talladega
- 2nd, Dover
- 4th, Kansas
- 7th, Charlotte
- 2nd, Pocono
- 28th, Michigan
- 14th, Sonoma
- 2nd, Chicagoland
- 29th, Daytona 2
- 9th, Kentucky
- 12th, New Hampshire
- 23rd, Pocono
Most of the time, he & the No.42 crew worked hard to figure out from the back row to challenge the Top 10.
When there’s a series of cautions came out during most of the final stage, Larson’s game has changed to see if his run will run better compared to his performances in Stages 1 & 2.
Initially, that tactic worked when Larson got inside the Top 10 as high as ninth.
But sadly before overtime, it’s so unfortunate that too many restarts including Aric Almirola incident at Turn 1 have collected Larson.
That’s only one of the downsides he learned the other day apart from a fast No.42 Chevrolet at Pocono.
He’s moved on and now focusing on bouncing back this weekend at Watkins Glen.
Larson may have finished 23rd during his latest road course Cup performance at Sonoma two months ago.
But focusing on getting the No.42 car Top 5-ready without incident will hopefully tell a different story race day this Sunday.
And by the way, sure he celebrated his birthday yesterday.
What you can do to Support Kyle Larson
Make sure you stay up to date with him via the social media channels:
Plus, you can shop the latest Kyle Larson Fan Gear and Collectibles via the official NASCAR Shop link here.
Image and Statistics Source: Racing Reference