LARSON CAPTURES K&N PRO SERIES EAST CROWN
By Jason Cunningham, NASCAR
November 3, 2012
ROCKINGHAM, N.C. – The 2012 NASCAR K&N Pro Series East championship came down to the last lap of the season and when the smoke cleared at Rockingham Speedway, rookie Kyle Larson won his first NASCAR title.
Tyler Reddick, 16, earned a victory in the Classic 3 Championship presented by RCR Racing Museum in a wild finish.
Reddick, who was making his series debut, got a run on race leader – and championship contender – Brett Moffitt coming out of Turn 2 toward the checkered flag. Moffitt came up on Reddick, made contact, and went spinning onto the grass. Reddick then came around to take the yellow and checkered flags.
A sixth-place finish by Larson was enough to give him the title by 15 points over Corey LaJoie. It marks the first NASCAR touring championship for Rev Racing and NASCAR Drive for Diversity.
The 20-year-old Larson, from Elk Grove, Calif., also won the series’ Sunoco Rookie of the Year, joining only Joey Logano and Ryan Truex in the 26-year history of the series to accomplish that feat of earning the championship in their rookie years.
LaJoie was also finished second to Reddick in Saturday’s race.
Moffitt, who was in position to clinch the title if he would have held on the final lap for the win, finished the race 21st and third in points, 24 points back.
Following Reddick and LaJoie across the line were Darrell Wallace Jr., Coleman Pressley and Jesse Little in the top five. The remainder of the top 10 in the series’ inaugural event at Rockingham were Larson, Ryan Gifford, Sergio Pena, Ben Kennedy and Eddie MacDonald.
With his victory Reddick earned a secured starting position in the inaugural UNOH Battle at the Beach on the short track at Daytona International Speedway in February 2013.
Larson will be crowned the 2012 NASCAR K&N Pro Series East champion at the NASCAR Touring Awards on Dec. 10 at in the Crown Ballroom of the Charlotte (N.C.) Convention Center at the NASCAR Hall of Fame.