Hendrick Motorsports has signed driver Kyle Larson to a multi-year contract that will see him join the 12-time NASCAR Cup Series champions beginning with the 2021 racing season. Larson was recently reinstated into NASCAR competition in late October, more than six months after his suspension for the use of a racial slur during an iRacing event.
Larson will pilot the No. 5 Chevrolet Camaro ZL1 1LE, which the organization will field for the first time since 2017.
Larson has won more than 250 events across a variety of sanctioning bodies and vehicle styles. The Elk Grove, California, native began driving at age seven and has raced stock cars, winged and non-winged sprint cars, karts, trucks, and sports cars.
In 2021, he will be paired with crew chief Cliff Daniels, who currently leads the No. 48 Hendrick Motorsports team with seven-time NASCAR Cup Series champion Jimmie Johnson.
“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.”
Larson, 28, is half Japanese and the only Asian-American to regularly compete in NASCAR. He is the first NASCAR Drive for Diversity graduate to race full-time at the Cup level and now serves as a mentor for the program. Since 2018, he has been a volunteer with the Urban Youth Racing School in Philadelphia, which helps expose students of color to motorsports. In May, Larson also began working with the Minneapolis-based Sanneh Foundation to advance diversity, equity, and community well-being. He and wife Katelyn live in North Carolina with their son Owen and daughter Audrey.
For more information: hendrickmotorsports.com.