Defending NASCAR Cup Series champion Kyle Larson agreed to a three-year extension with Hendrick Motorsports.The deal announced on Friday keeps the 30-year-old Larson behind the wheel of the No. 5 Chevrolet Camaro ZL1 through the 2026 season.”When Kyle joined our team, the expectations were sky high from both inside and outside the organization. To say he’s exceeded them would be an understatement,” team owner Rick Hendrick said in a news release. “Not only has Kyle proven himself as a champion driver, he’s performed at a championship level outside of the race car. We’re proud to continue our relationship and to see him represent our team and our brands in such positive ways. The years to come are very bright.”Hendrick signed Larson ahead of the 2021 season following a tumultuous year in 2020 in which he lost his ride at Chip Ganassi Racing and was suspended by NASCAR for using a racial slur during an iRacing event.Larson won 10 races for Hendrick in 2021, including the season finale at Phoenix Raceway to clinch his first Cup Series championship.”I can’t explain how much this opportunity means,” Larson said. “The chance to compete for the top team and best sponsors in racing is something every driver dreams about. I’m humbled to have incredible people in my corner and amazing support from so many fans. Thanks to everyone at Hendrick Motorsports and Hendrick Automotive Group for believing in me, (crew chief) Cliff (Daniels) and our team. Even though we’ve done some great things so far, I truly believe our best is ahead of us.”Larson has two wins this season and is eighth in the Cup Series standings heading into Saturday night’s playoff race at Bristol Motor Speedway.