RICHMOND, Va. (WRIC) — Last season, Erik Jones managed to finish seventh at the Verizon 200 at the Brickyard at Indianapolis Motor Speedway. This year, Jones returns to the race looking for an even better finish as he eyes qualifying for the NASCAR Cup Series playoffs; a win.

This past weekend, Jones managed to take home his sixth top 10 finish of the season in the M&M’s Fan Appreciation 400 at Pocono Raceway, finishing ninth. He was mildly satisfied with the finish but was hoping for a better performance as the speed of the car felt good in practice prior to the race.

“[We] just kind of needed to execute better,” Jones said. “I think the speed of the car is what we were hoping for but [we] didn’t put the rest of the race weekend together, the rest of the race together as good as we needed to.”

Qualifying for the race also went bad, Jones said. The #43 driver started the race in 34th, two positions away from last.

Currently, Jones sits in 19th place in the season standings with 472 points, 182 points behind Martin Truex Jr., the lowest ranking zero-win driver. With only five races remaining, it will be virtually impossible for Jones to surpass Truex Jr., meaning if he wants to qualify for the postseason, the easiest way will be to take the checkered flag in any of the five final races.

“I think it’s gonna take a win,” Jones said. “I think we’re just too far back on points right now. Pointing our way in just isn’t gonna happen at this point in the season.”

As a Michigan native, one race in particular that Jones is looking forward to is FireKeepers Casino 400 at Michigan International Speedway. Winning at the track would be a dream come true, he says.

In terms of this upcoming weekend at Indianapolis, Jones is feeling good about it but wants to focus on improving his performance on road courses.

“We need to get better on road courses,” Jones said. “I think road courses have probably been the toughest for us with this car. [We’re] just trying to learn and figure them out.”

Qualifying for the race will take place on Saturday, July 30, and the race will take place on Sunday, July 31, at 2:30 p.m.

In two weeks, Jones and the NASCAR Cup Series come to Richmond Raceway for the Federated Auto Parts 400 on Aug. 14.