(Eds: APNewsNow. Will be updated. With AP Photos.)
By PETE IACOBELLI
AP Sports Writer
HARTSVILLE, S.C. (AP) - Dale Earnhardt Jr. says he's gone faster at every track he's raced at this season - and he's certain Darlington Raceway won't be any different.
Earnhardt will try for his first Sprint Cup victory at the Southern 500 on Saturday night. He's also hoping to end a nearly four-year winless drought on the circuit stretching back to his first year driving for powerhouse Hendrick Motorsports.
Earnhardt is third in the points in NASCAR's Chase for a Championship due to a string of top-10 finishes this season. His eighth of the year came last week when he finished ninth at Talladega.
Earnhardt enters Darlington without a win in his past 139 races dating to June 2008 when he took the checkered flag at Michigan.

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