Knocking on the door: Expect Kyle Larson to visit Victory Lane in 2015
I know you’ve heard me say this last year, but I am almost totally shocked that then-rookie Kyle Larson didn’t win a NASCAR Spring Cup race last year. I think it’s safe to say he impressed everyone in the garage area with his performances in his rookie season. I mean the kid did everything last year but win a race.
I would wager that if you talked to the 16 drivers that made the 2014 Chase, they were pretty happy he didn’t win a race last year because the way he ran in the Chase races would have put him right up there in contention for the title.
Just like in life, there are no guarantees about anything, including winning a race. Do I expect him to win a race this year? Yes I do expect it to happen based on how he performed in the second half of 2014 when he was returning to the tracks for the second time. With that said, until we get into the actual season we really won’t know because we have another wild card with the 2015 rules changes.
We saw last year that some teams, like the No. 4 team of Kevin Harvick and Rodney Childers, got their arms around the new 2014 rules very quickly while others didn’t. If you want a couple of examples of those that struggled look at Matt Kenseth and Jimmie Johnson. Matt won seven races in 2013, but not a single event in 2014. While Jimmie did win a few races last year, they always seemed to be playing catch up to the No. 4 car and the Team Penske Fords.
Going back to Kyle Larson though, I really don’t think anyone in that garage area, myself included, think it’s a matter of if he wins but more the question of when he wins.