42 KYLE LARSON, Chevrolet
Team: Chip Ganassi Racing with Felix Sabates
WHERE HE STANDS: 12th, 16 points out of the top 10. Would make the Chase if the Chase for the Championship began this week.
WATKINS GLEN RECORD: Will make his Sprint Cup debut.
LOOKING AHEAD: Larson said, "I'm looking forward to racing back on a road course this weekend. Even though I haven't done a lot of road course racing I really like racing on those courses. Our Target Chevy was good at Sonoma, which isn't too similar to Watkins Glen, but I think we should have another competitive Chevy this weekend." Larson will also compete in the Nationwide Series race on Saturday at the Glen. "That will help a lot for the Cup race," adds Larson.
LOOKING BACK: After winning his first Sprint Cup pole position, Larson had high hopes for Sunday. But he never led a lap and ended the afternoon in 11th place. "Not the finish we were hoping for today," said Larson. "We had pretty good speed today, but struggled at times down the long straightaways. We fell back early in the race, and it was hard to pass out there to get positions back. We did a good job of racing towards the front, but the late cautions didn't help out. If the race had stayed green there at the end, we would have had a much better finish I think. Still a good points day, so that's a plus. We'll keep working hard the next several weeks for a win and a spot in the Chase."
ETC.: In winning the pole at Pocono, Larson became the first graduate of the NASCAR Drive for Diversity initiative to accomplish that feat at the sanctioning body's highest level. Of Japanese-American heritage, Larson previously became the first D4D competitor to win a NASCAR Touring Series championship, the K&N Pro Series East title in his first year competing under the D4D banner - 2012. Larson won the Rookie of the Year Award a year later in the Nationwide Series and leads the Rookie of the Year standings in the Sprint Cup Series this year. Larson has one win in the Truck Series and two in the Nationwide Series. His best finish in the Cup series is a second at Auto Club Speedway in March.