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NASCAR Race Weekend Central

Kyle Larson Leads Most Laps, Ends Up 19th at Kansas

Kyle Larson led 132 laps but it wasn’t enough to win the NASCAR Cup Series’ Buschy McBusch Race 400 at Kansas Speedway.

After a short restart left him behind the front row, Larson got stuck behind a sliding Ryan Blaney and hit the wall with two laps left. He ended up mired back in 19th place, his third-straight finish outside the top 15.

It was a disappointing result for the dominant No. 5 Hendrick Motorsports car, which carries the same paint scheme as 2001 Camping World Truck Series Kansas winner Ricky Hendrick.

Larson held the lead for 14 of the final 25 laps; he also led the most laps at Atlanta Motor Speedway in March before the No. 12 passed him with about nine laps left.

”Obviously I didn’t want to be on the second row of the final restart,” Larson told reporters on Zoom after the race. “I had Brad (Keselowski) lined up behind me the one before and he wasn’t able to get to my back bumper. He had to protect from the guys behind him trying to pull out of line so just got our lane slowed up. Just didn’t work out.”

Larson did win the fourth event of the season at Las Vegas Motor Speedway and has shown speed and dominance since, but recent bad luck and poor finishes has him in a slump. Last week at Talladega Superspeedway the No. 5 crew left a piece of metal in the car that caused the engine to expire, leaving Larson in last place.

”It’s great, we got one win, could have four or five. Just another day where I lead a lot of laps and no win. Just gotta figure it out.”

He’ll try again next week when the Cup Series take on Darlington Raceway on Mother’s Day. Larson has three top fives and five top 10 finishes at the Lady in Black, including his most recent runner-up result in 2019.

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