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David Reutimann admits to brewing feud with Kyle Busch

Bristol Motor Speedway is a pressure cooker that has ignited more than a temper or two over the years.

But under the category 'them are fighting words,' Kyle Busch really fueled the fire when he questioned the talent level of David Reutimann, who finished second to Busch on Saturday night.

"I felt like we were better than much of the field," Busch said in his post-race interview.

"Reutimann was fast, and he was good. And I'm not going to say why I beat him because then he'll fix it, but it has to do with behind the wheel.

"He wasn't driving the place right, I'm sorry. If he fixes how to drive this place, he'd be right there with me."

Not surprisingly, Reutimann, 40, took offense at the 25-year-olds remarks. After all, Reutimann was plagued with a stomach bug on Friday that warranted enlisting the services of Aric Almirola in a back-up role. Almirola practiced the car initially but Reutimann finished the final 40 minutes of the first session, ran the full second practice session and qualified the No. 00 Aaron's Toyota fifth.

Although Reutimann was not fully recovered on Saturday, he muscled the car into the top five throughout the night and trailed Busch at the finish line by just 0.677-seconds for a Bristol career-best second-place finish.

Reutimann was spent following the race and admitted while sitting in the post-race interview, "I'm not feeling so hot right now. So I'm ready to go to sleep at some point. Maybe now."

By Tuesday, Reutimann had recovered his spark. He unleashed on Busch's post-race comments during an interview with Sirius Radio's Dave Moody. Moody mentioned that Busch said the only difference between the two cars "was something behind the wheel, something he was doing that (Reutimann wasn't)."

The generally reserved Reutimann replied, "If Kyle says it, it's gospel. It's probably the stupidest comment I've ever heard anybody say at any given time because everyone's cars drive exactly the same. Everyone's cars are identical. Nobody's cars drive any different, so the guy who wins does a phenomenal job and the guy who finishes 43rd is just terrible because every one of the cars are identical. They drive exactly the same."

Moody then asked whether Busch was doing something different behind the wheel that Reutimann wasn't.

"I'm sure in his mind he is, but let's cut to the chase, he makes a comment like that after the race, he's not driving my frickin' race car and I'm not driving his. Every driver has to do different things inside their car to make it do what it needs to do because technically a lot of times a car's not perfect so you have to do things differently. Sometimes your car won't do what another guy's car will.

"I don't (know) if it's the fact that Superman's cape was flying out the back when I was behind him and I couldn't see or what the deal was (as) the reason that I couldn't pass him. Either way we ran second. We got beat fair and square, that's what it came down to. We just got outrun. But again, professor Busch, maybe he can start a driving school at Bristol and the rest of the field we can all join in and go. He can show all of us what we're doing wrong. I need help."

Before the interview ended, Reutimann admitted a feud had been brewing between the two Toyota drivers for a while. Reutimann said the drivers were friends when theyworked together at Nemco Motorsports in 2003. He's not quite sure when the tide changed.

Although he has had his share of run-ins with Busch's teammate Denny Hamlin, Reutimann and Busch haven't produced the same on-track fireworks. However, after this week that could change.

"It all comes down to we don't like each other very much," Reutimann said. "It's been (going on for) a while. We just don't like each other and we agree that we don't like each other and we're fine with it. We're pretty honest about it. I'm good with it.

"Kyle Busch is a phenomenal talent. He's a heck of race car driver. But it's not always the stuff you do on the track that makes you great. Richard Petty is great. He was great behind the wheel but he's also great off the race track. You have to do a little of both."