Oct. 19 (UPI) -- NASCAR announced Monday that driver Kyle Larson can return to competition next season following a lengthy suspension for using a racial slur earlier this year.
Larson was suspended in April after uttering the "N-word" while participating in an online racing event with other NASCAR drivers. He was dropped by his sponsors and fired by Chip Ganassi Racing as a result of the incident.
The 28-year-old Larson -- who is half Japanese -- spent the past six months taking part in diversity programs that helped him better understand racial injustice. He also spent significant time with retired soccer star Tony Sanneh and met with former Olympian Jackie Joyner-Kersee to see the impact of racial injustice.
"NASCAR continues to prioritize diversity and inclusion across our sport," the organization said in a statement Monday. "Kyle Larson has fulfilled the requirements set by NASCAR, and has taken several voluntary measures, to better educate himself so that he can use his platform to help bridge the divide in our country.
"Larson's indefinite suspension has been lifted. Under the terms of his reinstatement, he will be cleared to return to all NASCAR racing activities effective January 1, 2021."
Those terms for reinstatement include multiple speaking engagements -- each spaced out through 2023 -- where Larson will share his experiences with NASCAR's weekly series, eSports and dirt-racing communities.
He also will be required to participate in further training and engagement classes through 2023 and continue his work with the Urban Youth Racing School and Rev Racing.
"The work I've done over the last six months has had a major impact on me. I will make the most of this opportunity and look forward to the future," said Larson, who put the work in unpublicized in an effort to prove his motives were genuine.
Prior to his firing and subsequent suspension, Larson was considered the top free-agent prospect. He spent the past eight seasons with Chip Ganassi Racing.