Keep NASCAR Cup off dirt, Larson says

Image by Matthew Thacker/LAT

Keep NASCAR Cup off dirt, Larson says


Keep NASCAR Cup off dirt, Larson says


Don’t look for Kyle Larson to be a proponent of NASCAR running more on dirt tracks.

“Tony (Stewart) is probably going to get mad, but I would like to see it just stay as it is,” Larson said when asked of the Xfinity or Cup Series ever running on dirt. “If anything, Xfinity maybe, but I wouldn’t like to see Cup on dirt.

“To me, Cup belongs on pavement and real road course tracks. If we went to Eldora, yeah, I would be excited because I would be really fast and I feel like I would definitely have the best shot to win, but at the same time, I think we are fine not going there.”

NASCAR Trucks at Eldora. (Image by Russ LaBounty/NKP/LAT)

The conversation around NASCAR running more dirt races intensifies about this time every year when the Camping World Truck Series runs at Stewart’s dirt track in Ohio, Eldora Speedway, as it has for the past six years. And this week, Stewart used a radio appearance to urge fans to pressure NASCAR into putting its other two divisions on dirt.

Larson is a dirt talent and still runs sprint car races across the country and even overseas. Conceding that Eldora — where Larson won in a truck in 2016 — would be the first track on the list should the possibility ever start to come to fruition, he also said there are also other “good dirt tracks” in the country.

“Knoxville has got the facility to do it,” Larson said. “I don’t know off the top of my head; I would think Knoxville would probably be the only other half-mile. You have your dirt miles that you can go to, but I don’t think a dirt mile would put on a good race. It would just end up being a pavement race.”

Pressed to further explain his feeling as to why the Cup Series should stay on pavement, Larson said, “I’ve raced the trucks, and I don’t know, I feel like maybe if Goodyear could make a way better tire and us be actually able to use the horsepower — or even more horsepower — in our Cup cars on a dirt track, I think it would be a lot more fun.

“I don’t really know how to answer the question without making people mad.”