Larson Apologized to Haley for Coliseum Crash

The defending champion says he overreacted with 35 laps to go in the Clash.


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It wasn't too long after the Busch Clash at the Los Angeles Coliseum that Kyle Larson and Justin Haley a conversation about their incident near the end of the race.

The chat included an apology.

Larson and Haley were racing for third in the preseason exhibition event when a series of events compelled the defending champion to door-slam the Kaulig Racing No. 31 into the inside jersey barrier with 35 laps to go. The incident destroyed the left side of the No. 31 during a parts shortage across the industry with the Next Gen.

What gave Larson remorse was an immediate lack of understanding as to what happened leading up to the retaliation. The crash began with William Byron hitting Haley from behind and into Larson. That allowed Haley to dive under Larson before getting slammed into the wall.

Spotter Tyler Monn explained what happened during the ensuing caution and Larson explained himself to Haley after the race.

"I’ll start off by saying I overreacted," Larson said. "I’ll play it out in my mind. I went down the backstretch and knew (Haley) was on my outside. I got clear late in the straightaway, and the next thing I know, he was running the left side of me.

"You just see red really quickly. ‘Dang it.’ It was like, ‘Now I’m stuck on the outside, and I’m about to get shoved really far back, and I’m mad at you,’ so, yes, I hung a left on him.

"I did not want to crash him, but I wanted that inside lane for the next corner. So, I felt really bad. Instantly felt bad that I crashed him. He came over and talked to me after the race. I told him ‘I’m sorry that I wrecked you.’

"Yes, I wish I would have understood the racetrack that we were at and that somebody else probably shoved him into me, and maybe I wouldn’t have overreacted as bad as I did. I definitely felt bad about that. It is what it at this point.

"I’ve just got to learn from those moments. I feel like I do a really good job, normally, of staying calm. I think that instance, I didn’t, and I think probably with no points on the line probably played a factor in my overreaction. I hate that I tore up their car because of the lack of equipment that all the teams have right now. Nobody can really afford to be tearing stuff up at this point."