As the first driver locked into the Championship 4, Kyle Larson seemingly doesn’t have a lot to race for the next two weekends. After all, unlike the other playoff rounds, no playoff points carry over to the championship race, so any additional points Larson gathers this weekend at Kansas Speedway and next weekend at Martinsville Speedway are essentially meaningless for purposes of his title quest.
Of course Larson wants to win — who doesn’t? — but he’s already amassed twice as many victories in 2021 as Martin Truex Jr., the driver with the next highest win total. So heading to Kansas, Larson has a new goal: break the record for most laps led in a 36-race NASCAR Cup Series season.
“I definitely care about that number,” said the Hendrick Motorsports driver, whose No. 5 Chevrolet has led 2,267 laps in 2021. “I don't know what the mark is or what the number is, but yeah, that would be really, really cool. I led a lot more laps at Texas last weekend than I thought I would, so yeah, it's definitely a goal of mine. I think somewhere in the back of my mind, it's a goal. It's not like something I am upset about if I don't lead any laps in a race or anything, but once I am leading, I want to stay in the lead to help catch that record or whatever. But you have to have a fast race car to do that, and our race car has been really good all season long.”