Clint Bowyer comes into Sunday's race fifth in the Chase for the Sprint Cup standings, 185 points behind leader Jimmie Johnson.
Bowyer, the driver of the No. 07 Chevrolets, said he knows his team can't count on Johnson to make a mistake that could close that gap.
"You are hoping that happens, but you can't expect it," Bowyer said. "You have to go out there and try to beat him.
"As long as they're together, they're going to be a team to beat. It's up to all of us to catch up to them, learn from them. You learn from who you're getting beat by. You can't look behind you.
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"When I was racing back home five or six years ago, I was not looking at the guy who I was beating week in and week out to try to judge myself off of. You've got to look at the guy that's beating you or close to you, and that's what we all have to do. They've raised the bar and we have to answer that call, be better and run them down.
"A team like that is not going to make a mistake. They're just not - if they do it's out of their hands."