NASCAR AMERICA: Can ‘Dinger, Almirola avoid early Chase exit? (VIDEO)

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Surprise wins from Aric Almirola at Daytona and A.J. Allmendinger (pictured) at Watkins Glen have put them both into their first appearances in the Chase for the Sprint Cup.

But many observers are expecting them to be among the first four drivers eliminated following the Challenger Round, which starts this weekend at Chicagoland Speedway.

While they were able to punch their tickets to the Chase, Almirola and Allmendinger only collected two Top-5s apiece during the regular season.

So can they defy expectations, pick up the pace, and make it to the Contender Round?

NASCAR AMERICA’s Kyle Petty and Jeff Burton assessed the chances of the two underdogs in today’s show, and you can hear what they have to say in the clip above.