MARTINSVILLE, Va. — Kyle Larson said Tuesday that he should have raced Hendrick Motorsports teammate Chase Elliott with “more respect” at the end of Sunday’s Cup race at Watkins Glen International.
Larson made the comments after a Monday Hendrick competition meeting that he called “positive” and “constructive.”
Larson moved Elliott up the track going into Turn 1 on the final restart at Watkins Glen with five laps to go. Larson took the lead from Elliott and went on to win. Elliott finished fourth.
MORE: Elliott, Larson 1-2 in NBC Power Rankings
After the race, Elliott spoke with car owner Rick Hendrick and team executive Jeff Gordon on pit road. Elliott’s displeasure was obvious after the race, but he refrained from criticizing his teammate publicly.
Larson said of his move after the race: “I knew that was kind of my only opportunity. I’m not proud of it. But being in the inside lane, the right lane, being the leader, choosing the left lane, it definitely wins out. But when it gets to late in the race, it’s definitely risky.”
Monday’s competition meeting at Hendrick Motorsports provided a chance for greater discussion on the matter.
“We all had an open conversation in the competition meeting,” Larson said during a break in testing Tuesday at Martinsville Speedway. “It was positive, it was definitely constructive and it was good to have those talks.”
Asked if the drivers had a better understanding, Larson said: “One thing’s for sure, we all like to win. We try really hard to do that. In the end, probably should have a little bit more respect next time.
“I think you always have to look out for the organization and what’s best for everybody as a whole. I wish things would have played out differently and Monday would have been a lot better for me.”
While Elliott has won the regular season championship and will claim 15 playoff points, Larson is seeking to finish second in the season standings and earn 10 playoff points.
Larson leads Ryan Blaney by nine points, Joey Logano by 21 points, Ross Chastain by 27 points and Martin Truex Jr. by 34 points going into Saturday’s race at Daytona (7 p.m. ET on NBC and Peacock).
#NASCAR … Kyle Larson on how the competition meeting at Hendrick Motorsports went Monday. pic.twitter.com/rhkO0XcqgX
— Dustin Long (@dustinlong) August 23, 2022