Larson loses Ganassi NASCAR Cup drive after using racial slur

Chip Ganassi Racing has released NASCAR Cup driver Kyle Larson following his suspension for the use of a racial slur

Larson loses Ganassi NASCAR Cup drive after using racial slur

Larson had used the racial slur during the livestream of a NASCAR-sanctioned iRacing event on Sunday evening, put together by fellow drivers Landon Cassill and Garrett Smithley, when he appeared to lose communication on his headset with his spotter during the pre-race practice session.

Having been suspended without pay by Ganassi, Larson was suspended indefinitely by NASCAR and ordered to attend sensitivity training.

He was also suspended by iRacing from racing on its platform.

On Monday night, all three of Larson's primary sponsors on his No. 42 Chevrolet - First Data, McDonald's and Credit One - had announced they supported Ganassi and NASCAR's decisions and would no longer sponsor Larson himself going forward.

"After much consideration, Chip Ganassi Racing has determined that it will end its relationship with driver Kyle Larson," read a Ganassi statement.

"As we said before, the comments that Kyle made were both offensive and unacceptable especially given the values of our organisation.

"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."

No immediate replacement for Larson's No. 42 Chevrolet ride was named.

Larson issued a video apology on his social media channels on Monday afternoon following his suspensions from Ganassi and NASCAR.

Larson, a prolific dirt racer who won the Chili Bowl Nationals for the first time earlier this year, began NASCAR competition in 2012 as part of the sport's Driver for Diversity program, as his mother is Japanese-American.

Signed by Ganassi, Larson moved into a full-time Xfinity Series ride in 2013, made four starts in the Cup series and two more in Trucks, before stepping up into the Cup Series full-time.

He won three NASCAR races that year - two in Xfinity and one and in Trucks. His first Cup win came in 2016 at Michigan.

This season was Larson's last under his current contract with Ganassi.

His name had been previously linked for several prominent rides, including Hendrick Motorsports and Stewart-Haas Racing.

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