Kyle Larson said that he didn’t want to approach the race with risk at Michigan so that he won’t lose his top spot in series standings to Denny Hamlin.
Before the race at Michigan, Larson stood top of the NASCAR Cup Series standings with Hamlin behind him in the second position. He had a strong showing in the race with most laps led (70). But towards the end of the race, he had this choice to take a riskier approach to go for the win. However, he decided against it because he knows that if he lost positions due to this move, Hamlin could have overtaken him in the series standings.
“Just made a couple bad moves, I guess. I think honestly just a little too patient behind (Blaney),” Larson said. “Could have made some later, you know, dives I guess to the inside. Who knows. I need to watch the replay.
“I was probably honestly a little too – I had points on my mind a little bit too much. I’m looking in my mirror. I saw (Hamlin) falling back some. I just didn’t want to screw it up really.”
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In the end, Larson finished third and Hamlin fifth. This helped Larson extend his lead on the top of the standings.
“I could risk going for the win, not having it work out, end up 30-something and lose the point lead going into Daytona,” he said. “Or I could be a little bit more cautious, beat Denny by a couple spots, which is what we did.”
Larson has 28 points lead over Hamlin going into the final race of the regular season at t Daytona International Speedway.