NASCAR superstar Kyle Larson: another local hero for our outdoor lifestyle

We’ve written that Tahoe-Truckee athletes won more medals at the 2014 Winter Olympic Games in Sochi than many sovereign nations — a boost for our outdoor lifestyle. Winners included David Wise, Maddie Bowman, Jamie Anderson and Julia Mancuso.

Now we have a NASCAR superstar Kyle Larson, who represents the breadth of our sports heroes and recreational  lifestyle. “Since he started tooling around in a fun-kart that his father built for him when he was 4 and was growing up in Elk Grove, Calif., Larson has shown a knack for driving,” as the New York Times writes. “He started racing go-carts on dirt tracks at 7 and has been winning races almost ever since.”

Larson is the first NASCAR Drive for Diversity graduate to score a full-time NASCAR Sprint Cup Series ride. Before being signed as a Chip Ganassi development driver for the 2012 season, Larson claimed 22 open-wheel wins in 2011, including victories in the World of Outlaws series, all three United States Auto Club national divisions and the American Sprint Car Series.

Larson announced this month that he and girlfriend Katelyn Sweet, of Grass Valley, are expecting their first child, continuing what has already been a memorable 2014 for the NASAR driver.

“A lot of stuff going on, me and Katelyn (Sweet, girlfriend) just found out we are having a baby so it’s a really exciting time,” said Larson, who is 10th in points despite being the youngest driver in the series. “How good the racing has been going, a new house, all that and now that so it’s been a lot of fun.”

Katelyn is the sister of occasional NASCAR Nationwide Series driver Brad Sweet. “Baby Larson” is due in December 2014. “Congrats to my sis and Kyle,” Brad Tweeted. “Congrats!” added  NASCAR racer Danica Patrick.

Larson, who has two Nationwide Series wins this season along with six top-10 finishes in 14 Sprint Cup Series starts, is in his first year of full-time Sprint Cup Series competition.

Larson announced on Twitter earlier this month that he had purchased his first home, in Huntersville, NC, posting a picture of the abode, which is not your typical starter house. “A nice fixer upper,” joked one Twitter follower.

(Photos: and Kyle’s Twitter post).

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