Sunday, September 2, 2012

SIGnificant Cards - 2011 Wheels Element Ricky Stenhouse Jr.

Stealing a win and the Nationwide spotlight is one Ricky Stenhouse, Jr. If there was ever a sport that I liked to follow the prospects, its NASCAR. With 3 series of racing at the NASCAR level you can really see who is going to make it and who isn't. Also the ARCA series breeds the next generation drivers that will eventually make an impact in NASCAR.

This past Saturday, Ricky Stenhouse, Jr. snuck out a win in Atlanta and its part of a series of successes he's enjoyed over the past couple of seasons.

Stenhouse, 24, was the 2010 Nationwide Rookie of the Year and in 2011 he won the championship. He's poised to do it again in 2012 as he sits atop the leaderboard.

If you got a chance to watch Stenhouse race at the ARCA level, you knew he was a winner. As a rookie, he just drove with a swagger that made him standout. His success pushed him into the Nationwide Series and after finishing a partial 2009 season and overcoming getting replaced in his ride in early 2010, he rebounded and took home to Rookie of the Year honors.

That end of the year success continued in 2011 where he competed with a large amount of Sprint drivers at the Nationwide level. He drove to two wins and a championship. He literally raced at most times against the best in the world. With a rule change in 2012 where drivers had to pick one series to compete for, he's again finding himself on top. He's also gotten comfortable with a couple of Sprint Cup races under his belt.

It wouldn't surprise me if somewhere down the road, this Junior becomes a household name like the one driving the #88 car. With 4 wins, 3 poles and 14 top 5 finishes this year, he's on par with some of the all-time greats.

This card comes from the 2011 Wheels Element product. It was one of my favorite products of that year, and the only thing better than this particular auto would've been a 1/1.

Not long after I wrote this, it was announced that Stenhouse was going to get a full-time ride with Roush Fenway Racing for the 2013 season. He'll be sponsored by Best Buy too, quite an accomplishment for the young racer. Looks like this card is only going to increase in value.

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