Last year's Sprint Cup series runner-up Carl Edwards feels the need to get on a consistent run of results in order to avoid risking dropping out of Chase contention.
The Roush Fenway driver lost the Cup title to Tony Stewart last year on a tie-breaker after scoring the same amount of points, but he currently runs 12th in the 2012 driver standings, without a victory to his name this season yet.
Edwards carries a 46-race win-less streak in championship events, dating back to last year's race at Las Vegas. Although he claimed victory in the NASCAR All-Star race last year, he remains the only Roush Fenway driver who has not won a race for the past 12 months.
This season, his teammate Matt Kenseth won the season-opening Daytona 500, while points leader Greg Biffle claimed victory at Texas. They both run currently 1-2 in points, starting the second half of the regular season before the Chase kicks off in September.
"There's a lot on the line and it's so competitive right now," Edwards said at Pocono, site of two of his 21 Sprint Cup career wins. "I can't describe how competitive it is. If you look at our 99 team and our situation, our teammates are leading one and two.
"We're outside of the Chase right now and it's not because we haven't run as well as those guys, we have not been able to put together everything. Luck has been a big factor, but we haven't been able to put it together and if we have a couple of bad races, it could be really, really ugly so these races are very important."
Edwards has been involved in incidents at Bristol, Talladega and most recently at Dover, where a flat tyre put him in the wall while he was charging through the top ten. Besides those races and Phoenix, where he ran out of fuel, his worst result has been an 11th-place finish.
"We have to run well, so the pressure is on, which is kind of fun in a way," said Edwards. "I think it was last year at this point in the season we were leading or close to leading and there was really no pressure.
"We just had a win, we won the All-Star Race, and we were cruising, so this is like a good workout before a big game. We've got to keep the pedal down and go.
"Someone was asking me the other day about our situation and a Roush car has been leading the points over the last couple of years for a majority of the time, I think, so as a team I want to point out that we're doing very well... We've got to go."