Kyle Larson Reflects on Elimination From 2022 NASCAR Playoffs After Charlotte Roval

by Jonathan Howard
(Photo by Mike Mulholland/Getty Images)

After Sunday’s race at the Roval, the 2021 NASCAR Cup Series champion was eliminated. Kyle Larson talked about what went wrong in 2022 after the finish. From the top of the sport to out before the Round of 8. It happens, but that won’t make the Hendrick Motorsports driver feel any better.

This Next Gen car gave teams fits at the beginning of the season. Drivers have had problems off and on while NASCAR gets the details nailed down on the new car. One of those drivers that seemed to never get his footing this season was Kyle Larson.

Larson found himself on the wrong side of elimination at the end of Sunday afternoon. No excuses from the former champ.

“The only thing that I could have done differently was not crash and hit the wall and break the toe link,” the driver said, via “So yeah, it’s all on me and then you know the team repaired it as quickly as they could and yeah, then at that point they’re just along for the ride as far as points go. Just dumb mistake on my part.”

Larson went on and talked about the difficulties of this new car.

“It’s frustrating to end like this but as up-and-down as I was this season, I’m not surprised that I made another mistake – and a costly one at an important time.”

Kyle Larson Never Got Going

This season wasn’t a complete throwaway. Two wins and a playoff appearance aren’t a total failure. However, those wins at Fontana and Watkins Glen likely feel hollow at this point in time. Kyle Larson ended up on the wrong side of things as the Round of 12 came to a close.

Through six playoff races this season, Larson was moderately successful. It just wasn’t enough to keep his head above water. His worst finishes in the playoffs came in the last two races. A P18 finish at Talladega followed up by a P35 finish at the Roval – it just put him in a bad spot.

When each race matters as much as they do in the modern NASCAR Playoffs model, things like this can happen. It always felt like Kyle Larson and his team were just one win away from turning things around. Just one race away from going on a streak. It just didn’t come to fruition.