After scoring his first career Nationwide Series win on Saturday, Kyle Larson posted his best career Sprint Cup Series finish on Sunday after finishing second behind Kyle Busch.
For most of the race, Larson ran around the 12th place spot as he said his steam struggled with his Target Chevrolet being too loose on exist and too tight in the center.
“My guys worked really hard all day long to find that right balance, and right there on the last pit stop we were able to make good enough adjustments where we could go hard for a couple laps,” Larson commented.
A caution came out for Clint Bowyer having a flat tire, resulting in a round of pit stops with Larson coming off pit road eighth for the green-white-checkered.
“I was thinking I was going to line up eighth but then the 40 stayed out and I had to line up on the bottom and I was disappointed because the bottom had been getting jammed up once we got to Turn 1,” Larson said.
The restart went a little wild than the rest of the restarts as the field broke out, four and five wide heading into turn one.
“I had to move around a little bit,” Larson said of the restart. “I spun my tires just a little bit, and Jamie was able to get a run to my inside, so I was stuck in the middle. I think I got to Jeff (Gordon)’s outside. Luckily I didn’t get tight behind anybody or loose or anything like that. It was a pretty — I guess it was pretty hectic for me, but really nothing too scary for me, either.”
Larson was able to quickly work his way to the front, coming off turn one fourth. He then followed Kyle Busch by both Tony Stewart and Kurt Busch coming off turn two the next lap to move into second.
“(I) thought I might have a shot at Kyle depending on where he’d go into Turn 3, but he was good enough to keep it on the bottom and stay ahead of me,” Larson said. “But we’ll take a second. Long race and definitely didn’t expect to run second, so I’ll take it and head back to North Carolina with a smile on my face.”
While many teams fought with tire issues throughout the day, Larson was able to keep all four tires underneath his No. 42 Target Chevrolet solidly all day.
“I think it was a little bit of camber issues or something,” Larson commented. “We had a little bit of an issue in practice or happy hour yesterday, and then we worked on that and got it better, and we actually didn’t have any tire issues the whole race. Every pit stop my crew chief would tell me my tires were great. There was just a small concern that last run we had when people really started blowing tires, but I wasn’t too concerned.”