Kyle Larson NASCAR win

Last year, Kyle Larson was banned from NASCAR indefinitely after he was caught saying the N-word. He was unsure if he would ever get to compete in the sport that he loved again.

However, Larson’s suspension was lifted at the end of last year. He was picked up by Rick Hendrick, who took a chance on someone that was considered to be a risk for sponsors after his racial scandal.

This past weekend, Hendrick learned that he had made the right decision when Larson won his first NASCAR Cup race since returning to racing.

Larson Wins First Race Since Suspension Is Lifted

“Thanks Mr. H. for believing in me,” a visibly emotional Larson said over the radio to Hendrick after winning his race, according to ESPN.

This was Larson’s first ever win on an intermediate track, and he celebrated it with smoke-filled burnouts that included one on the backstretch for friends of his that were watching from a nearby motorhome.

Afterwards, Larson admitted that he teared up as he took the white flag, but that he’d gotten himself together by the time he was done with his burnouts.

“I didn’t know if I’d ever have an opportunity to win a NASCAR race again,” said Larson, going on to thank Hendrick again for taking “a massive chance on me.”

Related: Kyle Larson Grateful For Second Chance In NASCAR After Career Imploded For Using A Racial Slur

Hendrick Speaks Out

This was only Larson’s fourth race with Hendrick Motorsports. And, Hendrick himself confessed that he was both shocked and overjoyed by the victory.

The win is all the more impressive because due to COVID-19 protocols, the team has not been allowed to practice at all. That meant that Larson has had to learn while competing in the actual races.

“I didn’t really expect it to come this quick because I really thought it would take time to jell,” Hendrick said of the victory. “He’s a champion, really, and I am so lucky to have him.”

Related: Hall Of Famer Tony Stewart Suggests NASCAR ‘Get Off Their A$$’ And Reinstate Kyle Larson

Bubba Wallace Congratulates Larson 

Bubba Wallace, who is the only full-time driver at NASCAR who is black, was one of the first people to congratulate Larson on his win.

“It meant a lot for Bubba to come to victory lane,” Larson said. “He’s always believed in me. That was special.”

Brad Keselowski, who came in second in this race behind Larson, had words of praise for him as well.

“He got in a great car, he’s a great driver and he’s going to make things happen,” Keselowski said. “That’s what he does. He’s a wheelman.”

From the start of his racial slur scandal last year, Larson has been deeply apologetic for what he did.

It’s good to see that he is being given the second chance that he deserves.

Here’s hoping that this is the beginning of many more NASCAR victories for Larson in the months and years to come!

Read Next: Bubba Wallace Mocks Fellow NASCAR Driver’s Christianity During Tantrum Over Loss

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