Each year after a 26-week regular season, 12 drivers (or 13 in this year's case) earn a spot into the Sprint Cup Series Chase for the Championship. For the teams that failed to qualify, the rest of the season can be used a test session to get things righted and come back more prepared the following year to make a playoff run.
Undoubtedly, there will be a handful of teams that improve their performance next year and take one of the Chase spots that they missed out on in the previous season.
In the slides ahead, we will take a look at five drivers who fit that mold. For one reason or another the 2013 season saw these drivers miss the Chase. The year 2014 will be a different and better year for each of them.
In some cases, a driver missed time with injuries, which ultimately ruined their championship hopes. In other instances, 2013 was just filled with mediocre performances for a driver and their team, or in one case a driver will be making their first full-time appearance in the Sprint Cup Series in a number of years.
Whatever the case may be, these five drivers will all find themselves in the Chase in 2014 after missing the cut in 2013.