CHARLOTTE, N.C. — Hendrick Motorsports announced Wednesday that it has reached a multi-year agreement with driver Kyle Larson in the NASCAR Cup Series beginning in 2021.
Larson was indefinitely suspended earlier this year when he said a racial slur during an online racing event on a live microphone. He was also fired by Chip Ganassi Racing. NASCAR reinstated Larson earlier this month after he satisfied their requirements to return.
Hendrick Motorsports announced that Cliff Daniels, current crew chief for seven-time champion Jimmie Johnson, will be teamed with Larson. He will drive the No. 5 Chevrolet for Hendrick, who is retiring the No. 88 from its lineup, as Alex Bowman will drive the No. 48 car next year.
“Kyle is unquestionably one of the most talented race car drivers in the world,” said Rick Hendrick, owner of Hendrick Motorsports. “He has championship-level ability and will be a significant addition to our on-track program. More importantly, I have full confidence that he understands our expectations and will be a tremendous ambassador for our team, our partners and NASCAR. Kyle and I have had many, many conversations leading up to today’s announcement. I’m confident about what’s in his heart and his desire to be a champion in all aspects of his life and career. Kyle has done important work over the past six months, and Hendrick Motorsports is going to support those continued efforts.”
The 28-year-old Californian has six wins in NASCAR's top series. His last win came at Dover last October. He also won the NASCAR All-Star Race in 2019.
“Hendrick Motorsports is a championship organization that has set a high bar for performance and for how its drivers represent the team and its partners,” Larson said. “My goal is to win races, be a great teammate, continue my personal efforts to grow, and hold myself to that high standard personally and professionally. Making the absolute most of this platform and the opportunity in front of me is my focus. I know what’s expected of me and what I expect of myself, on and off the track."
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