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The competition in front of him is tough.

Keselowski has two Chase wins and was fifth at Charlotte in May. Johnson is a six-time Charlotte winner who made the track his personal playground from 2003-06. Denny Hamlin is winless at Charlotte, but has seven top-10s in 14 career starts.

And Kahne, who shares a shop at Hendrick Motorsports with Gordon, ranks among the top active drivers at Charlotte over the last 10 races. He’s won there four times, too.

Gordon, though, is only focused on what he alone can do on the track.

“We’ve finally been getting the finishes to match the strong runs we’ve had during races this year,” said Gordon. “If we continue to do that, we’ll continue to move up in the standings.”