With each new racing season, there is anticipation of what is to come. Who deserves our attention, who will surprise, who will disappoint? 2014 promises to be another great season with lots of expectations and more than a little nervousness.
Looking back at 2013, there are three young drivers who stood out. Each made their own mark and each deserves a closer look going forward.
First of the three is Austin Dillon. With a truck and Nationwide championship under his belt, Austin has proven himself deserving of a Sprint Cup ride. With his owner, Richard Childress also being his grandfather, there is no question that he will have the best.
Will the return of that famous #3 bring a ready-made fan base or will the diehard Earnhardt fans protest having anyone other than the Intimidator carry that legendary number?
The next driver to watch is Darrell Wallace, Jr. Having his first win and being the first African-American driver to win since Wendell Scott, this kid has proven himself to be the real thing. This young man has shown himself to be a worthy competitor and he may well run for a championship in 2014
Finally, lots of eyes will be focused on Trevor Bayne. It is hard to think of Trevor as a young driver. After all, he is a Daytona 500 Champion. Trevor has had to deal with the highest highs and the lowest lows. Late in 2013, it was announced that he had been diagnosed with Multiple Sclerosis.
Racing is a tough sport, even for those who are in tip-top shape. Will Trevor be able to overcome the constant barrage of questions related to his health that are sure to come each week?
There is no way to predict how the 2014 season will turn out for these three incredible young drivers. If past performance is the only way to measure future success, the fans are probably in for a real thrill.