Busch appears to have made up that distance with some room to spare.
It's hard to avoid Kyle Busch for this race tonight. And he won the fall race here previous year. "They got us off pit road first those last two times that came down for tires, and got us where we needed to be". Chase Elliott, Denny Hamlin, Joey Logano and Kevin Harvick rounded out the top five in a caution-filled finish. Two cautions and restarts over the final 10 laps would set up a shootout to the finish.
Busch started in the 32nd spot, the lowest for a Cup race victor at Richmond since 2008, when Clint Bowyer came from 31st to victory thanks largely to Busch.
Matt Kenseth had a dominant run in the Federated Auto Parts 400, leading 352 of 400 laps on his way to the victory.
Pit stops were a crucial aspect of Busch's victory. Fords dominated the action early, taking the first three positions in Stage 1 and the top four in Stage 2. "I wondered if I'd come out alive. I guess it was probably 2012, 2013 when we started to talk a little bit more and kind of get over our difference some", Busch said, adding that the retired Earnhardt had a lot to doing with making it possible. That was a lot of fun to see that clean air and passing cars and racing to the end of the stages was a lot of fun.
Ryan Blaney ( 120): Blaney is undervalued this week, and I do like him at plus money against Bowyer who might be thinking about winning stages instead of races. I saw a lot of 18 (his auto number) stuff, so I just chose to go up there and give some guys and some kids some high-fives and 'what's up's, but fortunately I got out of there. Margin of Victory: 0.511 Seconds. We were 13th, 15th, something like that in the first half of the race. But there was one more round of green flag pit stops looming ...
"We had a really good Shell/Pennzoil Ford early in the race and got a couple of stage wins early, which was great", Logano said.
"We can't look at the results tonight and think we're right there, because in reality I think we still have some work to do".
The three-race winning streak is the second of his career.
"Pretty disappointed that we didn't get at least a chance", Truex told Fox. His average finish at this track is 8.423 while his driver rating at Richmond is 109.6, which ranks second only to Busch in this field.
NO YELLOWS: Other than cautions for the stage breaks, the yellow flagged remained out of sight through 350 of 400 laps. Busch will go to Talladega next week seeking to equal the four consecutive victories last done by Johnson 11 years ago. Busch has now finished in the top three for seven consecutive weeks.
"Every time we come here, there are always awesome fans at this racetrack and there are always so many people", Jones said.