Hard-driving mofo: Just ask him, Kyle Busch will tell you

As they say in NASCAR, Kyle Busch drove the wheels off his No. 18 Toyota to surge from 16th to third over the final laps of Saturday night's Toyota Owners 400 at Richmond.

Matt Sullivan/NASCAR via Getty Images

If you’ve followed Kyle Busch’s NASCAR career, you know he’s one hard-driving mofo. If you don’t believe it, just ask him.

Busch, pilot of the No. 18 Joe Gibbs Racing Toyota, showed just how hard driving he really is Saturday night, when he charged from 16th to third in the final nine laps of the Toyota Owners 400 at Richmond International Raceway.

On a night when he didn’t lead any laps and the three JGR cars weren’t especially fast relative to the competition, Busch’s banzai run was an unexpected bonus that showed both his formidable talent behind the wheel and the savvy of crew chief Dave Rogers, who gambled big when he called for four tires under the final caution.

And it resulted in Busch giving one of the early contenders for quote of the year after the race: "I just put it on kill out there and drove it like a bad mofo and come home third," said Busch of his final run.

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In truth, Busch was as shocked as anyone with his finish.

"(I) have no idea the last 10 laps, I have absolutely no clue," Busch said.  "I started 16th and finished third — that’s about all I know. Pretty crazy with everything going on. I was shaking in my seat just because of how fast I was passing guys. I was like, ‘Whoa, something is going to happen –something is going to screw up.’ I was just trying to make sure I didn’t end up in it. Those guys were racing hard up front and it was really cool to watch from my seat."

On the final restart on Lap 392, Busch started 16th, while up front, Matt Kenseth, Brad Keselowski, Jeff Gordon and eventual race-winner Joey Logano waged an epic battle in the closing laps. 

"Glad I got by and then it kind of got settled out and got too calm and let Joey (Logano) and Jeff (Gordon) just kind of stabilize and I could just run with them and that was all I had," Busch said. "Great finish for the way our day was."

Busch admitted he questioned the call by Rogers to pit late, but the four fresh Goodyears made all the difference in the end.  

"Can’t say enough about the gutsy call by Dave," Busch said. "And the bad-ass driving by me."