Kyle Larson Makes History with Smallest Margin of Victory in a NASCAR Race at Kansas Speedway

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Kyle Larson Wins Kansas By.001Logan Riely - Getty Images

The Month of May is off to a tremendous start for Kyle Larson as he captured his second win of the season at Kansas Motor Speedway on Sunday night. This win etches his name further into the history books as it replaces 2003 Darlington and 2011 Talladega for the closest finish in NASCAR history, beating Chris Buescher to the line by.001 seconds.

Earlier this year at Atlanta Motor Speedway, Daniel Sureaz beat Kyle Busch and Ryan Blaney to the line by.003 seconds, making it the third closest in NASCAR history. I don't think anyone was prepared for a closer call in the 2024 season.

A late caution gave the No. 5 team the refuge they needed as they were struggling, Larson told NASCAR on Fox he was happy to see the final caution.


"I don't know that was wild; I was thankful for that caution," Larson said, "We were dying pretty bad."

Buescher led the final lap out of the last corner, and the two battled up high, bumping into each other and sliding to the bottom of the track before the finish line; Larson didn't take the lead into the moment the photo finish was captured, leading Buescher and the RFK No. 17 team to begin to celebrate over the radio.

By the time Larson made it to turn three, he saw his Spotter Tyler Monn celebrating up top and knew the initial report of a Buescher win was incorrect.

"I didn't know if I won or not, and I was pumped for the finish," Larson said, "I can't remember if it was Cliff or Tyler, my spotter, that said that the No. 17 got it. I was like, 'Hey, good job today, team,' because that was a great race, and then I got to about turn three, and Tyler is going crazy up top."

Monn will be Larson's spotter later this month as the Hendrick driver attempts the Indy 500 for the first time. The duo will then fly to Charlotte Motor Speedway to attempt the infamous Memorial Day Double that has only been successfully completed by Tony Stewart back in 1999 and 2001.

Buescher dominated earlier in the race-winning Stage Two and then had to battle back after an 'over the wall too soon' penalty sent him to the back of the longest line.

After the race, Buescher was still not ready to admit defeat off of the photo finish alone, saying that he just couldn't see it.

"I haven't seen the replay yet, just a picture and I sure can't see it in that picture" Buescher told NASCAR on Fox, "It sucks to be that close."

On the final lap, Larson turned a 30.846 compared to Buescher's 30.985. Buescher's second-place finish was his second of the year, the first coming at Phoenix Raceway; these are the RFK driver's only top-five as he entered the race weekend in 14th place in the standings.

Chase Elliot and Martin Truex Jr. were the next two to the line; Elliot finished.06 seconds behind Larson and Truex at.075. The difference between Larson and Truex would've broken the record for the closest finish in Kansas history. Instead, that record was completely obliterated.

This win for Larson comes the night after he came up a spot short to his brother-in-law Brad Sweet in the High Limit Sprint Car Series race at Lakeside Speedway just 10 miles down the road. High Limit is jointly owned and run by Larson and Sweet.

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