NASCAR Driver Kyle Larson Fired After Using Racial Slur During iRacing Event
NASCAR driver Kyle Larson was fired by Chip Ganassi Racing after using a racial slur during Sunday’s iRacing event. The move comes after multiple sponsors severed relationships with the 27-year-old.
Larson has been a successful racer in NASCAR’s top series in recent years, winning six Cup races and making the playoffs in four straight years. The incident ends a six-year relationship with Chip Ganassi Racing, who also runs a car operated by Kurt Busch.
“As we said before, the comments that Kyle made were both offensive and unacceptable especially given the values of our organization,” a statement from CGR reads. “As we continued to evaluate the situation with all the relevant parties, it became obvious that this was the only appropriate course of action to take.”
With live racing suspended due to the coronavirus, NASCAR has been sanctioning virtual races through iRacing. On Sunday (April 12), Larson was competing and lost communication with his spotter. While trying to check the microphone on his headset he said, "You can’t hear me? Hey (n-word)."
Other racers and those watching did hear him and responded. One said, "Kyle, you’re talking to everyone, bud," while another remarked, "No way did that just happen."
On Monday morning (April 13), Larson apologized on social media.
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"Last night I made a mistake and said the word that should never, ever be said and there's no excuse for that. I wasn't raised that way, it's just an awful thing to say and I feel very sorry for my family, my friends, my partners, the NASCAR community, and especially the African-American community."
NASCAR suspended Larson soon after the incident.
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