Rick Hendricks Former Champion in Deep Trouble As Slump Gets Deeper After Enthralling Start to the Playoffs

The playoff woes just don’t seem to die for Rick Hendrick. As soon as he found some sort of relief when William Byron made his way into the round of 8 with a win at Texas Motor Speedway, luck had perhaps decided to turn southwards on the 74-year-old billionaire. The impact came from haunting his star driver, Kyle Larson. When the driver of the No. 5 Chevy walked away from Talladega Superspeedway with a 15-point advantage over the cutline, his team must have felt safe and sound in their playoff journey.

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But the happiness did not last long as Kyle Larson’s qualifying run for the Bank of America Roval 400 got ruined due to a crucial mistake. As a result, the 31-year-old Elk Grove native will start Sunday’s race at the ROVAL from the rear end of the field. Although starting from behind the pack is never optimal, Larson found solace in something else.

Despite a bad start, Kyle Larson felt straightforward about his approach


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What started as a good afternoon for Kyle Larson ended in disappointment. Towards the end of Group A’s practice run, Kyle Larson’s Chevy got loose around turn 1 and rammed straight into the outside wall. The damage was enough to force the #5 Hendrick Motorsports team to arrange a backup car for Kyle Larson. However, it was of little use as Larson got no additional on-track time to fare any better than a 36th-place finish.

The 2021 Cup Series champion admitted that the 2.66-mile road course oval is not the easiest for drivers to drive on. Adding to the misery of Kyle Larson, three drivers who are below the cut line will start the race from the top five positions. And that includes fan favorites Tyler Reddick, Christopher Bell, and Bubba Wallace.

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However, Kyle Larson was somewhat happy to have his goal set; he will race to improve his overall standing in the race and not to gather stage points. According to racingamerica.com, Kyle Larson admitted, “I think it’ll be really hard to pass, so, we’ll not be able to get Stage points. Hopefully, we’ll at least inch our way forward and be towards the front come Stage 3 to get a good points day that way.”

Watch this story: Rick Hendrick’s Candid Insight into Hendrick Motorsports Operation

Can Hendrick Motorsports No. 5 turn the course of events like he did a couple of years ago?

Throwback to 2021 when Kyle Larson snatched his 7th win of the season at Charlotte Motor Speedway in the same Cup Series race. There was a point when he had fallen below the cutline, but he buckled up and steered forth to seal the deal. Passing pole-sitter Denny Hamlin on a late restart, Larson faced some difficulties because the #5 team had to change his alternator belt in the middle of the race, making him lose several priceless spots.


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Kyle Larson admitted that he noticed his battery going low. However, his crew was able to turn things around quickly. During a post-race interview, Larson laughed and exclaimed, “I was getting stressed out like, ‘Man, I’m not gonna get knocked out of the playoffs like this. It wasn’t looking too good, and thankfully everybody in our 5 car did a great job of staying calm,” he added.”

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Do you think Kyle Larson can turtle-turn the odds against him and emerge victorious at the ROVAL? Let us know what you think in the comments below!

Author: ZeroToHero

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