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NASCAR AMERICA: Kahne’s in Chase, but knows he and No. 5 team must improve (VIDEO)

Sep 1, 2014, 8:00 PM EDT

Kasey Kahne’s victory on Sunday at Atlanta Motor Speedway saved the season for himself and his No. 5 Hendrick Motorsports team.

But leading up to Sunday, Kahne and the 5 camp had largely struggled in 2014, while all three of his HMS teammates – Jeff Gordon, Dale Earnhardt Jr., and Jimmie Johnson – had each won multiple races.

In order to hang with them, Team Penske, and everybody else during the Chase for the Sprint Cup, Kahne recognizes that he and his entire team need to step up – and step up big.

“We need to build off of this,” Kahne told NBCSN contributor Nate Ryan in Victory Lane at Atlanta. “We have more confidence, we’re gonna have some momentum, and we won at the right time. But as a team, we need to be stronger together.

“We need to make less mistakes – myself, the pit crew, every part of it. Hopefully, tonight will get us all pointed in the right direction. We’ll show up at Richmond and go all-out again, and be prepared for the first [Chase] race in Chicago.”

For more of Kahne’s interview with Ryan, as well as Kyle Petty and Parker Kligerman‘s own thoughts on how Kahne will fare in the post-season, check out the NASCAR AMERICA clip above.

Video from NASCAR America

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