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Apr 27, 2014 - 05:59 AM
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2014 Richmond: Kyle Larson NASCAR Nationwide Race Recap
Posted by: newsla on Apr 27, 2014 - 05:58 AM
2014 Richmond: Kyle Larson NASCAR Nationwide Race Recap

In his third-career start at Richmond International Raceway, Kyle Larson and the NASCAR Nationwide Series (NNS) battled the weather into the wee hours of the night during the ToyotaCare 250. With a new chassis and a new paint scheme, Larson and his Turner Scott Motorsports (TSM) team ranked fourth fastest during the first NNS practice, followed by seventh fastest in the final session. Despite not making a mock run, Larson told crew chief Scott Zipadelli that he thought the No. 42 car was the best he had felt all season, and Zipadelli agreed that they had one of the best race cars for the main event.


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The rain held off long enough to get NASCAR's two knockout qualifying sessions in and Larson and his No. 42 Target Ticket Chevrolet placed in the 14th position for the start of the night race. The weather, however, quickly moved into the Richmond area and the NNS garage found themselves in a lengthy holding pattern. Around 10:00 p.m. EDT, three hours after the original start time, the ToyotaCare 250 officially began and the No. 42 Target Ticket Chevy was on a mission to get to the front. By lap 15, however, Larson communicated to Zipadelli that he was extremely tight in the corners.

As the track changed drastically into the night, Zipadelli told a frustrated Larson to stay focused, as the majority of the field was struggling with similar issues. Throughout the foggy 250-lap race, the No. 42 car came down pit road four times, each stop consisting of big swings at adjustments to correct Larson's handling issues. The final round of adjustments by the TSM team allowed Larson to get better control of his car and by lap 170, the No. 42 Target Ticket Chevy Camaro had found a place within the top 10. Larson began to log lap times as fast of the leader and within the final 30 laps, the 21-year-old had powered into the top five. Despite an impressive comeback, Larson was unable to gain additional track position in the final laps and the Target Ticket car crossed the finish line in fourth position.

Kyle Larson on Racing at Richmond International Raceway:
"What a frustrating night. This was by far one of the top five most frustrating races I've competed in. Everyone had similar issues all night on the track and in our case, I just couldn't find the speed and stayed tight all night. My Turner Scott Motorsports team worked hard in the pits all night and [Scott] Zipadelli did a great job at getting our Target Ticket Chevy where it was by the end of the race. My spotter Derek [Kneeland] also did a great job getting me through all the fog and around a few of those cautions. I'm happy to take this top-five finish and move on to next weekend."
First Practice Position: 4 Fastest Lap: 22.195 sec. Laps: 39
Final Practice Position: 7 Fastest Lap: 22.385 sec. Laps: 56
Qualifying Position: 14 Fastest Lap Time: 22.357
Race Position: 4 Completed/Total: 250/250 Led: 0

What's Next - The NNS will head down south to the infamous Talladega Superspeedway next week for the Aaron's 312. Tune in to ESPN on Saturday, May 3rd for live coverage beginning at 2:30 p.m. EDT.

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