Dominant Larson makes it back-to-back wins and another Hendrick 1-2

Hendrick Motorsports fantastic 2021 run continued at Sonoma Raceway as Kyle Larson took the chequered flag first to lead home teammate Chase Elliott.

Victory for Larson was his second in as many races and meant that Hendrick’s record-breaking run continues as the team became only the second team to finish first and second four times in a row after Karl Kiekhafer Racing in 1956.

“Our car was awesome all day, made my job a lot easier than it has some days in the past,” Larson is quoted on “The tires, when they’d get hot and cycle cool under yellow, I lost some front grip. I kind of missed my apexes in a few corners so Chase stayed on me longer than I wanted him to but I was able to get away for the last lap.

“It’s just a lot of hard work (from Hendrick Motorsports). It’s been putting in for a long time now. A few years ago, for their standards, they were struggling. They dug down deep and we continue to work hard, too. I hope this is just the beginning of a lot more wins now.”

Larson began his quest for another race victory from pole position and after pitting on lap 10 he emerged sixth before making inroads to complete his fourth successive stage victory. Having pitted again between stage segments, Larson again put the pedal to the metal, staying out after the third race caution and taking a fifth stage win in a row.

Pitting again between stages, Larson resumed in 21st but made up ten places in three laps and found himself chasing down race leader Elliott with 33 laps to go. Having reclaimed the lead, he pitted for tires and fuel but again cut a swathe through the field, leading once more before making a final stop under caution with 17 laps remaining.

Now established as one of the best overtakers in the field, Larson regained the lead with 15 laps to go and held off Elliott for his second victory.

“We were solid, just needed a little bit,” added Elliott. “I felt like through the rights I could get through pretty good but struggled through the lefts more than I should.”

Motorsport Technology