NASCAR driver Kyle Larson has officially been suspended without pay after his use of a racial slur during an iRacing event broadcast on Sunday. According to videos making the rounds on social media, LArson thought he’d lost communication on his headset and attempted to get the attention of someone in the chat.
NASCAR’s zero-tolerance policy
“NASCAR has made diversity and inclusion a priority and will not tolerate the type of language used by Kyle Larson during Sunday’s iRacing event,” a NASCAR statement read. “Our Member Conduct Guidelines are clear in this regard, and we will enforce these guidelines to maintain an inclusive environment for our entire industry and fan base.”
Larson said, “You can’t hear me? Hey, n—-r.” His quote came across to everyone in the audience as well as other drivers, many of whom responded to tell the racer that they heard him.
“We are extremely disappointed by what Kyle said last night during an iRacing Event,” Chip Ganassi Racing said in a statement, per ESPN. “The words that he chose to use are offensive and unacceptable. As of this moment we are suspending Kyle without pay while we work through this situation with all appropriate parties.”
In the aftermath
After his suspension, Larson posted a video to his Twitter account, apologizing for his language and noting that it was “an awful thing to say.”
The race was broadcast on both Twitch and eNASCAR.com, though it is not officially affiliated with NASCAR.
This follows in the footsteps of fellow NASCAR driver Bubba Wallace who lost a sponsorship when he rage-quit during an iRacing event the previous week.