Kyle Larson in the Indy 500: What to know about NASCAR star making Indianapolis 500 debut (2024)

Kyle Larson is a NASCAR Cup Series champion with a growing legacy ahead of his age and a dirt-track legend.

But until recently, Larson had not driven an IndyCar.

Sunday, Larson, 31, will make his IndyCar Series debut in the Indianapolis 500 with plans to do the double. If weather permits it, Larson plans to run the 500 then fly to North Carolina to run NASCAR's Coca-Cola 600, the longest race of the NASCAR Cup Series schedule, for his day job at Hendrick Motorsports.

11 A.M. SUNDAY UPDATE: Weather has thrown a wrench into Larson's plans; the Indy 500 start has been delayed due to an impending storm, with a hypothetical start time set for late afternoon barring any other weather interruptions. IndyStarreported Sunday that Larsonwill stay to run the Indy 500over the Coca-Cola 600.

The current NASCAR Cup Series points leader qualified in the top 10 for both races, and NASCAR observers know he will factor into any race on a 1.5-mile track. But IndyCar?

Here's what to know about Larson and his double efforts on Sunday:

STARTING LINEUP:Indy 500: Starting lineup, TV schedule for Sunday's race

How did Kyle Larson running the Indy 500 come together?

Larson announced his intention to run the 2024 Indianapolis 500 back in Jan. 2023, with the confirmed sponsor of an Arrow McLaren entry. From there, Hendrick and McLaren worked almost immediately in sorting out the details.

The 2021 Cup Series champion impressed during the rookie test last October and has been fast throughout the month of May.

Larson will be in an orange and blue McLaren entry with the blue scheme splashed among the orange similar to his Cup Series paint scheme. Hendrick Motorsports technical director Brian Campe will be the race strategist, and Larson will have his usual spotter Tyler Monn in his ear. McLaren has prepared the car as one of four entries into this year's 500.

Kyle Larson's Indy 500 starting position

Larson will start the Indianapolis 500 in fifth, in the middle of the second row. It will be his first IndyCar Series start.

Kyle Larson's Coca-Cola 600 starting position

Larson qualified 10th for the Coca-Cola 600. It will be his 345th career Cup Series start and the 15th career Cup start at Charlotte.

What happens for Kyle Larson and the 'double' if the Indy 500 is delayed?

We're finding that out on Sunday. Hendrick Motorsports tweeted Sunday that Larson will run the Indy 500, now scheduled for a 3:45 p.m. CT start.

That will end his chances at the double. The Coca-Cola 600 is scheduled for a 5:22 p.m. CT green flag. Justin Allgaier will run in the No. 5 Hendrick Motorsports Chevrolet in Charlotte.

Allgaier told FOX Sports and The Athletic that Larson will drive the No. 5 car if he returns to Charlotte before the end of the 600 following the completion of the Indy 500.

NASCAR drivers who have attempted the Indianapolis-Charlotte double on Memorial Day weekend

John Andretti (1994)

At Indianapolis: 10th

At Charlotte: 36th

Andretti was the first driver to attempt the double, for A.J. Foyt at Indy and for Billy Hagen at Charlotte. It was Andretti's first full-time Cup Series season and a struggle in a car with a declining race team. Andretti finished four laps down in 10th in the 500, then completed 220 laps in the 600 before retiring with a crankshaft issue.

Robby Gordon (1997, 2000, 2002, 2003, 2004)

At Indianapolis: 29th (1997) | 6th (2000) | 8th (2002) | 22nd (2003) | 19th (2004)

At Charlotte: 41st (1997) | DNS (2000) | 16th (2002) | 12th (2003) | 20th (2004)

Gordon never completed all 600 laps in the day, coming closest in 2002. That day, Gordon finished 8th at Indy in a Team Menard entry, then finished one lap down in 16th for Richard Childress Racing in Charlotte. Otherwise, rain split up his 1997 attempt into three days while forcing him to miss the start of the 2000 Coca-Cola 600 three years.

Tony Stewart (1999, 2001)

At Indianapolis: 9th (1999) | 6th (2001)

At Charlotte: 4th (1999) | 3rd (2001)

Stewart remains the only driver to win an IndyCar and NASCAR Cup Series championship. Stewart was a contender often in his five 500 tries, including both times he attempted the double, but was an instant star in the NASCAR Cup Series when he made the full-time switch in 1999. In 2001, Stewart became the first driver to complete all 600 laps with a sixth-place finish at Indy for Chip Ganassi and a third-place run at Charlotte for Joe Gibbs Racing.

Kurt Busch (2014)

At Indianapolis: 6th (2014)

At Charlotte: 40th (2014)

Busch was steady throughout the 2014 Indy 500, finishing 6th for Andretti Autosport in his IndyCar debut. Early engine issues forced Busch to retire his Stewart-Haas Racing car early in the 600 later in the day. Of those who have attempted the double, Busch's profile compares most favorably to Larson. Busch, 35 at the time, made his IndyCar debut in a very competitive entry while having a very good Cup ride.

Kyle Larson in the Indy 500: What to know about NASCAR star making Indianapolis 500 debut (2024)


How did Kyle Larson do in the Indy 500? ›

Inclement weather dashed Kyle Larson's dream of completing “The Double,” but the driver of the No. 17 Arrow McLaren Dallara Chevrolet did lead laps on his way to an 18th-place finish in his first Indianapolis 500 on Sunday at Indianapolis Motor Speedway.

Who has the most career Indy 500 starts? ›

Helio Castroneves made his 24th Indy 500 start, moving into a three-way tie with Gordon Johnco*ck and Johnny Rutherford for fourth place for career Indianapolis 500 starts. The record is 35 by A.J. Foyt, followed by Mario Andretti with 29 and Al Unser with 27.

How old is NASCAR Kyle Larson? ›

The penalty put him a lap down and took away any realistic chance the 31-year-old driver had of winning the race. Being in contention that late and managing to make it back to the lead lap was still a significant accomplishment for Larson, who started fifth and said he hopes to return to the Indy 500 in 2025.

Who owns Kyle Larson's Sprint car? ›

Kyle Larson Racing, originally Larson Marks Racing, is an American sprint car and midget car racing team owned by NASCAR driver Kyle Larson.

What place did Kyle Larson finish in the Indy 500? ›

Larson has been named Rookie of the Year for the 108th Indianapolis 500 after finishing 18th with a top average lap speed of 223.584 mph, IndyCar and Indianapolis Motor Speedway announced Monday.

Did Kyle Larson get a penalty? ›

Larson qualified fifth (in the middle of the second row) in his Arrow McLaren machine and finished 18th after a late-race speeding penalty. The plan was for Larson to complete the Indianapolis 500 and take over his Cup Series car after arriving at Charlotte Motor Speedway.

How much money does the Indy 500 winner get? ›

In 2022, the Indianapolis 500 purse was $16,000,200, and the winner earned $3.1 million. Prior to 2022, the largest Indianapolis 500 purse was $14.4 million for the 2008 Indianapolis 500.

Who was the youngest driver to win the Indy 500? ›

Troy Lynn Ruttman (March 11, 1930 – May 19, 1997) was an American racing driver. He is best known for winning the 1952 Indianapolis 500 - at the age of 22 years and 80 days, Ruttman remains the youngest ever winner of the event.

Why do they drink milk after winning the Indy 500? ›

“Winners Drink Milk” is considered one of the most beloved phrases and traditions in Indiana and all of sports. The tradition started at the Indianapolis 500® by driver Louis Meyer simply requesting buttermilk to quench his thirst after the 1936 race.

Does Kyle Larson own a race team? ›

Dirt car racing

Larson owned a World of Outlaws sprint car team named Kyle Larson Racing, fielding a car for Carson Macedo.

What is the net worth of Kyle Larson NASCAR driver? ›

Kyle Larson's Net Worth and Salary

Kyle Larson's achievements in the NASCAR Cup Series have enabled him to accumulate a fortune worth approximately $12 million. However, he draws a salary of about $10 million as a NASCAR racer from his Hendrick Motorsports contract and various sponsorships and endorsem*nts.

How many times has Kyle Larson won in NASCAR? ›

Larson is a 25-time Cup race winner and qualified for the NASCAR Playoffs in 2016-19 and 2021-23. His first win for Hendrick Motorsports came in March 2021 at Las Vegas Motor Speedway. He won the 2019, 2021 and 2023 NASCAR All-Star Races.

What car does Kyle Busch drive in real life? ›

He competes full-time in the NASCAR Cup Series, driving the No. 8 Chevrolet Camaro ZL1 for Richard Childress Racing, part-time in the NASCAR Xfinity Series, driving the No. 33 Chevrolet Camaro also for RCR, and part-time in the NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series, driving the No. 7 Chevrolet Silverado for Spire Motorsports.

What make of car does Kyle Larson drive? ›

Upon joining Hendrick Motorsports for the 2021 season in the No. 5 Chevrolet Camaro ZL1, Larson's career trajectory rocketed. He won a series-high, 10 NASCAR Cup Series races, plus the NASCAR All-Star Race, on his way to the 2021 NASCAR Cup Series Championship.

Is Kyle Larson still with Hendrick Motorsports? ›

Kyle Larson, the 2021 NASCAR Cup Series champion, begins his fourth season with Hendrick Motorsports and looks to add to his series-best total of 17 wins over the past three seasons.

Who won the Indy 500 in 2024 today? ›

Josef Newgarden has won the 108th Indianapolis 500, prevailing in a thrilling duel with Pato O'Ward on the final lap to win "The Greatest Spectacle in Racing" for the second year in a row.

Who ran Indy 500 and co*ke 600? ›

Tony Stewart is the only driver to successfully complete all 1,100 miles of both the Indianapolis 500 and the Coca-Cola 600 without being a lap down.

Who is Kyle Larson driving for today? ›

Kyle Larson | 5 Team | Hendrick Motorsports.

What kind of race car does Kyle Larson drive? ›

Upon joining Hendrick Motorsports for the 2021 season in the No. 5 Chevrolet Camaro ZL1, Larson's career trajectory rocketed. He won a series-high, 10 NASCAR Cup Series races, plus the NASCAR All-Star Race, on his way to the 2021 NASCAR Cup Series Championship.

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