Kyle Larson admitted something not often heard from a NASCAR Cup champion Saturday: he made a mistake.
Larson spoke to reporters Saturday at Michigan International Speedway for the first time since his hard crash at the Indy Road Course last Sunday. After falling laps down due to mechanical issues, Larson was trying to salvage a decent finish when late in the race he charged into Turn 1 and slid sideways with his Chevy exploding into the Chevy of Ty Dillon.
Both drivers were fine, but Dillon did admit it was the hardest hit he had even endured. In the immediate aftermath it appeared that Larson had perhaps lost his brakes or had another mechanical issue.
Larson admitted Saturday neither was the case.
“Just made a big mistake,” Larson told reporters. “I got in there (to the corner) deep and I got out of shape. And I was hoping that by the time I got under control, I could go straight before they turned into the corner. And once I realized that I was going to hit the (No.) 47 (of Ricky Stenhouse Jr.), I tried to just do what I could to turn right and miss both of them. And that obviously didn’t happen.”
Dillon said he had talked to Larson, and there were no hard feelings.
“I knew it was a mistake,” Dillon said Saturday. “And definitely looking at the SMT, it’s a really rare mistake that you wouldn’t think that he would make, but we’re all human. And that was kind of what I told him. I was like, ‘hey, we’re gonna make mistakes.’ That’s the risk I take every weekend getting in a race car and knowing that’s a possibility. I’m glad he’s OK, I’m glad I’m OK and we get to come out here and try it again at 200 mph at Michigan.”
Larson called the mistake “embarrassing” and is ready to move on. He qualified 8th for Sunday’s Cup race.
“Feel really bad about wiping Ty out and just very thankful that him and I were both safe and didn’t get seriously injured,” he said, “Because yeah, it was scary for both of us. Hate that that happened and just try not to make any mistakes like that going forward.”
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