Fired Japanese American professional driver Kyle Larson has applied for reinstatement last week and plans to return to the racing world after finishing his sensitivity training, the National Association for Stock Car Auto Racing (NASCAR) said on Oct. 16.
The 28-year-old profession driver had his NASCAR membership suspended after using a racial slur during an online racing event on April 13, according to NASCAR.
— A.J. Perez (@byajperez) April 13, 2020
“You can’t hear me? Hey, n****r,” Larson said when he suddenly lost communication on his headset. He was eventually let go by the American auto racing organization on April 14.
To get reinstated, Larson must attend a sensitivity training, which he already completed on May 6. He also used the moment to better educate himself during his time working with the Urban Youth Racing School, Autoweek reported.
Larson also spent time with retired soccer player Tony Sanneh and members of The Sanneh Foundation as well as attended a memorial for George Floyd.
In addition to winning nine out of his last 10 dirt races across both Sprint Car and Midget competition, Kyle Larson has been contributing to charity programs like the @Sannehfdn this summer.https://t.co/lSgZiG0WH1 pic.twitter.com/gUol5dOQ4L
— Matt Weaver (@MattWeaverAW) June 21, 2020
“Since April, I’ve done a lot of reflecting,” Larson wrote in his post on his website on Oct. 4. “I realized how little I really knew about the African-American experience in this country and racism in general. Educating myself is something I should’ve done a long time ago, because it would’ve made me a better person – the kind of person who doesn’t casually throw around an awful, racist word. The kind who makes an effort to understand the hate and oppression it symbolizes and the depth of pain it has caused Black people throughout history and still to this day. It was past time for me to shut up, listen and learn.”
Larson made his first TV interview with CBS This Morning on Oct. 16 following the racist incident.
For the first time, we’re hearing from @NASCAR driver Kyle Larson after he was fired in April for using a racial slur during a virtual racing event.
— CBS This Morning (@CBSThisMorning) October 16, 2020
“I feel like I’ve definitely grown more in these last six months than I have in the 28 years I’ve been alive,” Larson said in his interview.
The six-time NASCAR Cup Series competed in several dirt racing contests for Sprint Car, Midget and Late Model during his suspension and won 42 times out of 82 appearances.
Feature Image via Getty