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2013 Richmond NASCAR: Harvick surges through to steal win

"P***ed off," replied Montoya when asked how he was feeling. "We made the right calls when we pitted and when we stayed out and everything, but we got that caution at the end and it was a no-brainer to take tyres. I think what hurt us is we restarted on the outside and when you restart on the outside and people got really bad tires, everything packs up. And when you're on the outside, you can't; where are you going to jump?"

As for Burton, he explained his decision to stay out under that final yellow despite knowing full well that he's pay for it at the restart: "We were seventh there," he said. "The caution came out and what the heck, we might as well try something. ... Obviously new tyres a lot better, but [it was] worth a shot. We were going to maybe finish sixth without the caution so to pick up a spot from it was worth a shot."

Longtime leader Matt Kenseth completed the race in seventh place just in front of Aric Almirola. "It was up and down," said Kenseth of his evening. "In the beginning of the race, we were real strong and in the middle of the race we probably had a fifth to sixth-place car or something like that."

He added it had been a wild finish: "Just two laps, everybody is going to go for it and go for every hole they've got," he said. "If I could have drawn the inside line instead of the outside line then maybe I could have ran second. Just starting on the top you knew they were going to be three and four-wide and it was just tough."

As Harvick performed his celebratory burnouts, the fireworks were going off elsewhere: Tony Stewart was taking serious exception to being nudged wide from behind by Kurt Busch in the final stages of the race, a move that dropped him from fifth place all the way to 18th at the flag. He expressed his displeasure by repeatedly muscling the #78 in the side as the two headed back to pit road.

"It's a free-for-all at the end," said Busch. "There is rubber build-up in the outside groove. There are cars sliding up with old tyres. So, I don't know what the #14 was upset about. I got hit from behind, I got hit every which-way. So did he."

It wasn't just Stewart upset with him: Busch, who finally finished in ninth place, likely won't be the most popular man in the NASCAR paddock as he'd tried similar hard-nosed tricks on a number of other drivers during the closing laps.

"That last restart, just being on the outside and the #78 drove up through there and knocked my whole side off and put me in the marbles," grumbled Kenseth.

"I'll remember if we get in that position again what I'll do to Kurt," fumed Truex, recalling being spun out of the front at an earlier restart. "Just destroyed the back of the car."

Behind Busch there was a threesome of Hendrick Motorsports drivers: a newly-beardless Dale Earnhardt Jr. captured the final top ten place, with Jeff Gordon in 11th and Jimmie Johnson nursing the damaged #48 home in 12th, a solid result in the circumstances that means his lead in the NASCAR Sprint Cup championship standings is now 43pts over Carl Edwards




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Kevin Harvick, driver of the #29 Bell Helicopter Chevrolet, pits during the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Toyota Owners 400 at Richmond International Raceway on April 27, 2013 in Richmond, Virginia. (Photo by Robert Laberge/Getty Images)
Jimmie Johnson, driver of the #48 Lowe`s Dover White Chevrolet, and Tony Stewart, driver of the #14 Rush Truck Centers/Mobil 1 Chevrolet, spin in front of Jeff Gordon (#24) after an on track incident during the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Toyota Owners 400 at Richmond International Raceway on April 27, 2013 in Richmond, Virginia. (Photo by Patrick Smith/Getty Images)
Kevin Harvick, driver of the #29 Bell Helicopter Chevrolet, celebrates in Victory Lane after winning the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Toyota Owners 400 at Richmond International Raceway on April 27, 2013 in Richmond, Virginia. (Photo by Justin Edmonds/NASCAR via Getty Images)
Kevin Harvick, driver of the NASCAR Sprint Cup #29 Bell Helicopter Chevrolet SS celebrates his win with a burnout at the Toyota Owners 400 Saturday, April 27, 2013 at Richmond International Raceway in Richmond, Virginia. (Photo by Harold Hinson for Chevrolet)
Kevin Harvick, driver of the #4 Budweiser Chevrolet, celebrates with a burnout after winning the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Ford EcoBoost 400 at Homestead-Miami Speedway on November 16, 2014 in Homestead, Florida. (Photo Credit: Chris Trotman/Getty Images for NASCAR)
Kevin Harvick, driver of the #4 Budweiser Chevrolet, and Ryan Newman, driver of the #31 Caterpillar Chevrolet, lead a pack of cars during the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Ford EcoBoost 400 at Homestead-Miami Speedway on November 16, 2014 in Homestead, Florida.  (Photo Credit: Patrick Smith/Getty Images)
Kevin Harvick, driver of the #4 Budweiser Chevrolet, passes Denny Hamlin, driver of the #11 FedEx Express Toyota, to take the lead and win the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Ford EcoBoost 400 at Homestead-Miami Speedway on November 16, 2014 in Homestead, Florida. (Photo Credit: Patrick Smith/Getty Images)
Kevin Harvick, driver of the #4 Budweiser Chevrolet, and team owner Tony Stewart celebrate winning in Victory Lane after the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Ford EcoBoost 400 at Homestead-Miami Speedway on November 16, 2014 in Homestead, Florida. (Photo Credit: Todd Warshaw/Getty Images for NASCAR)
Kevin Harvick, driver of the #4 Budweiser Chevrolet, celebrates with his wife DeLana and son Keelan in victory lane after winning during the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Ford EcoBoost 400 at Homestead-Miami Speedway on November 16, 2014 in Homestead, Florida. (Photo Credit: Patrick Smith/Getty Images)
Kevin Harvick, driver of the #4 Budweiser Chevrolet, celebrates with the trophy in Victory Lane after winning the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Ford EcoBoost 400 at Homestead-Miami Speedway on November 16, 2014 in Homestead, Florida. (Photo Credit: Sean Gardner/Getty Images)
Marcos Ambrose, driver of the #9 Stanley Ford, poses with his team before his last race, the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Ford EcoBoost 400 at Homestead-Miami Speedway on November 16, 2014 in Homestead, Florida.  (Photo Credit: Jerry Markland/Getty Images)
Kevin Harvick, driver of the #4 Budweiser Chevrolet SS, celebrates his victory and the 2014 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Championship Sunday, November 16, 2014 winning the final NASCAR Sprint Cup race of the season at Homestead-Miami Speedway in Homestead, Florida. Ryan Newman, driver of the #31 Caterpillar Chevrolet SS finishes 2nd. (Photo by Harold Hinson/HHP for Chevy Racing)
Kevin Harvick, driver of the #4 Budweiser Chevrolet SS, celebrates his victory and the 2014 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Championship Sunday, November 16, 2014 winning the final NASCAR Sprint Cup race of the season at Homestead-Miami Speedway in Homestead, Florida. Ryan Newman, driver of the #31 Caterpillar Chevrolet SS finishes 2nd. (Photo by Harold Hinson/HHP for Chevy Racing)
Kevin Harvick, driver of the #4 Budweiser Chevrolet SS, celebrates his victory and the 2014 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Championship Sunday, November 16, 2014 winning the final NASCAR Sprint Cup race of the season at Homestead-Miami Speedway in Homestead, Florida. Ryan Newman, driver of the #31 Caterpillar Chevrolet SS finishes 2nd. (Photo by Harold Hinson/HHP for Chevy Racing)
Kevin Harvick, driver of the #4 Budweiser Chevrolet SS, celebrates his victory and the 2014 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Championship Sunday, November 16, 2014 winning the final NASCAR Sprint Cup race of the season at Homestead-Miami Speedway in Homestead, Florida. Ryan Newman, driver of the #31 Caterpillar Chevrolet SS finishes 2nd. (Photo by Christa L Thomas/HHP for Chevy Racing)
Kevin Harvick, driver of the #4 Budweiser Chevrolet SS, celebrates his victory and the 2014 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Championship Sunday, November 16, 2014 winning the final NASCAR Sprint Cup race of the season at Homestead-Miami Speedway in Homestead, Florida. Ryan Newman, driver of the #31 Caterpillar Chevrolet SS finishes 2nd. (Photo by Garry Eller/HHP for Chevy Racing)
Kevin Harvick, driver of the #4 Budweiser Chevrolet, leads Jeff Gordon, driver of the #24 Drive To End Hunger Chevrolet, during the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Ford EcoBoost 400 at Homestead-Miami Speedway on November 16, 2014 in Homestead, Florida.  (Photo Credit: Sean Gardner/Getty Images)
Kevin Harvick, driver of the #4 Budweiser Chevrolet, celebrates in Victory Lane after winning the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Ford EcoBoost 400 and the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Championship at Homestead-Miami Speedway on November 16, 2014 in Homestead, Florida. (Photo Credit: Chris Graythen/Getty Images)

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