DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. — NASCAR officials have confirmed that Kyle Larson, who has been suspended since April 13 after he used a racial slur during an iRacing live stream, has applied for reinstatement with the sanctioning body.
The news of Larson’s request for reinstatement comes amid rumors he could return to the NASCAR Cup Series next year with multiple unconfirmed reports that he could drive the No. 88 Chevrolet for Hendrick Motorsports in 2021.
Larson, who was fired by Chip Ganassi Racing after the much-publicized incident in April, participated in sensitivity training that was required by NASCAR in order for him to be reinstated, and hasn’t stopped there.
During an August interview with the Associated Press, Larson said he visited with retired soccer player Tony Sanneh and volunteered at The Sanneh Foundation in Minnesota in the weeks before the passing of George Floyd. He later visited the place where Floyd died with Sanneh while also touring parts of the city that were damaged by the protests that followed Floyd’s death.
Larson has also continued to work with a group called the Urban Youth Racing School in Philadelphia, Pa., an organization that helps minorities advance in motorsports. He’s also worked with a personal diversity coach.
He also published an essay on his website on Oct. 4 addressing the situation and detail his efforts to atone for his actions.
The 28-year-old California native spoke about his suspension during an interview that was broadcast Friday on CBS This Morning, saying, “I know deep down I’m not a racist. I said a racist word and I can fully understand why people would label me a racist.”
For the first time, we’re hearing from @NASCAR driver Kyle Larson after he was fired in April for using a racial slur during a virtual racing event.
— CBS This Morning (@CBSThisMorning) October 16, 2020
Larson has kept busy while away from NASCAR, competing weekly on dirt tracks across the country in a variety of race cars. He has earned more than 40 victories in sprint cars, midgets, late models and Silver Crown cars, proving he is still among the top racing talents in the United States.
It is unknown how long it will take for NASCAR to assess Larson’s reinstatement.