Racing the Indianapolis 500 has been on Kyle Larson’s radar for most of his racing career.
This week, the full-time NASCAR Cup Series driver took another step toward realizing that dream.
In early January, it was announced Larson and Hendrick Motorsports were teaming with Arrow McLaren for an entry in the 2024 running of The Greatest Spectacle in Racing. Should Larson qualify, he could become the fifth driver to do “The Double” — race in the Indy 500 and Coca-Cola 600 on the same day.
On Tuesday, Larson took another step toward fulfilling his dream.
He visited the Arrow McLaren race shop in Indianapolis for a seat fitting, signifying the first time he’s ever sat in an Indy car.
“I love trying to push my abilities and figure out new things, and there’s nothing as new and different to me as IndyCar probably will be,” Larson noted in a video shared by Arrow McLaren on Twitter.
“I love trying to push my abilities and figure out new things, and there's nothing as new and different to me as INDYCAR will be." 👏 pic.twitter.com/nDl0R6yilz— Arrow McLaren IndyCar Team (@ArrowMcLaren) May 4, 2023
The first-time feeling isn’t something Larson experiences often either.
Along with his 2021 Cup Series championship, Larson is best known for his eclectic motorsports resume, which includes wheeling sprint cars, dirt late models and an IMSA sports car in the 24 Hours of Daytona. While his NTT IndyCar Series endeavor will add another line to the list, it promises to be a career highlight for the 30-year-old.
Larson already has the bar set high for his Indy 500 appearance.
“I know we’ll have a shot to win. This is definitely winning equipment,” Larson said.
With anticipation high, but still a year to go before he’s able to line up on the grid, Larson remains content with the idea of waiting until 2024 to run the Indy 500.
“If I was to do it this year, it honestly would be a rush. I wouldn’t feel prepared,” Larson said. “Getting to spend a whole year, taking my time to learn things and talk to different people, I think will be very beneficial.”
Tony Kanaan, the 2013 Indy 500 winner, was also present at Arrow McLaren on Wednesday, as he was fitted for his seat in Arrow McLaren’s fourth entry for this year’s Indy 500. Kanaan will make the final laps of his 25-year IndyCar career during the 107th running of the Indianapolis 500.