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Stenhouse’s happiness comes from being in a groove following a brief slump this summer in the No. 6 Ford. A three-race stretch saw him finish 26th, 32nd and 25th, which only dropped him to third in points but raised concerns about consistency.

The 13 races since have included victories this month at Chicago and Atlanta, seven other top-fives and two top-10s. Stenhouse’s lowest run was 12th at Montreal.

That has helped end Sadler’s 14-week stay atop the standings, and Stenhouse is confident of more success.

“Our season has been really consistent,” he said. “Even when we were bad those three races, we were very consistent in finishing bad. Hopefully we can keep the consistency on the good side for the rest of the season.”

Stenhouse was 12th fastest in Friday’s final practice. Qualifying is Saturday.