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THINGS TO WATCH

THINGS TO WATCH

1. Must win

Dale Earnhardt Jr. is 11th in the NASCAR Chase standings. With one race left in Round 2, Junior must win at Talladega Superspeedway, which is base camp for the Earnhardt Nation. Junior has confidence, saying, “I wouldn’t rather be going anywhere else than Talladega for the next race if we need a win. Even over Daytona, I think we can go to Talladega and do the job.”

2. It won’t happen

If you are looking for Matt Kenseth to exact revenge on Joey Logano at Talladega Superspeedway, it won’t happen. Kenseth will be racing to win, period. Logano should pull for Kenseth; even help him get to the lead if possible.

A Kenseth win will negate all retaliation plans against Logano. If Kenseth fails to get into Round 3, then figure Logano won’t have a chance at the 2015 Cup Series championship. Count on that.

3. No matter what

Joey Logano will advance to Chase Round 3 no matter what happens at Talladega. In theory all Logano really needs to do is qualify and run one lap. Realistically, the young driver must hang out for all 188 laps to help Team Penske teammate Brad Keselowski make the next cut. Logano could become the ultimate wingman of NASCAR racing.

Godwin Kelly, [email protected]

Dale Earnhardt Jr., surrounded here by a couple of HALO 5 Guardians, will do whatever it takes to win at Talladega on Sunday. CHRIS TROTMAN/ NASCAR VIA GETTY IMAGES

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