2010 Element Box Break & Review

Design: Photobucket

This year’s Element is all about “Going Green” and recycling.  Almost, if not all of the cards are printed on recycled cardboard.  The packs aren’t even wrapped in foil.  The wrappers feel like recycled paper too.  Sorta like some of the old school packs from the 90’s.  If your familiar with the Heritage products from that “other” manufacturer you’ll get the idea of how each card looks and feels.  2010 Element looks totally different than last year’s.  The 2010 cards have a clean, fresh look to them almost as if they were grown from a tree 🙂  Sometimes the black text on the reverse side can be hard to read because the cardboard is dark itself, but its not that bad.

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A hobby box will run you around $80.00.  To me, that sounds about normal.  Your not going to get a lot of new products for less than that.

Hit Quality: Photobucket

Press Pass guarantees two hits per box on average.  I ended up pulling three hits.  Every box comes with a Mystery pack on top which can yield a serial numbered card, autograph, or cash.  I pulled the following:

  • J.R. Fitzpatrick Blue Ink Autograph
  • Jimmie Johnson Finish Line Race-Used Tire #’ed/99
  • Jimmie Johnson Recycled Materials Race-Used Tire/Sheet Metal #’ed/25
  • Kevin Harvick Blue parallel #’ed/35

I’d like to think every box has a good chance of having something extra for the collector.  Press Pass seems to underestimate the number of hits you get per box.  Many of the boxes I’ve opened have had an extra hit.  You can look for Danica Patrick’s first NASCAR trading cards within this product too.  She doesn’t have any relics or autographs in Element, collectors will need to wait until Eclipse for those.

Press Pass is holding a contest where the winner will receive a complete set of 2010 Wheels Autographs numbered 1/1.  My box came with one contest card that gives you a starting point towards the answer.  I think each contest card says the same thing on the back.  You can head over to OrderOfElements.com for weekly clues until someone gets the right answer.

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Overall, I give 2010 Element 4 recycling logos out of 5 (1=poor & 5=perfect).  This product does have a lot of base cards which is great for those set collectors.  I bet you could finish a single base set with two boxes.  I like the fact that Press Pass changes the theme of this product every year.  Its just not the same thing all the time, they put a lot of thought into it.  I like cards where you can hold them up to the light and you can see the grain of the cardboard versus a plain glossy coat.

Card of the Day: Danica Patrick 2010 Wheels Element Preview 1/1

Collectors seem to really enjoy these Press Pass Preview cards that are sold exclusively on eBay.  This Danica Patrick 2010 Wheels Element Preview card is numbered 1/1 and is already over $200.00.  I can’t wait to see how her relics and autographs do this year.

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2010 Element Mystery Box-Toppers

2010 Element will be released on January 17th, and Press Pass has unveiled a few new surprises that might be hiding in your box.  Each box will contain the usual (1) autograph and (1) relic, but this time every box will contain a Mystery box-topper pack.  Inside these box-toppers you’ll be able to find randomly inserted Undiscovered Elements autographs.  This will be the first autographs for some of the drivers featured on these cards.  You can also look for blue parallels of these drivers #’ed/35 and are hobby exclusive.  The Mystery box-toppers could also contain $20 and $100 bills.

I’m really excited about this year’s Element.  The design looks great, and Press Pass keeps coming up with innovative ways to keep the collectors attention (even if it means including cash inside the packs).  Going after new drivers that haven’t had a certified autograph yet is always a good thing too.

Here are some of the autographs that you can pull from the Mystery box-toppers.  Each Undiscovered Element driver will have 125 blue ink autos, 25 red ink autos, plus various inscriptions.

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Danica Patrick’s First Press Pass Cards

After Danica Patrick signed with JR Motorsports last week, it sure didn’t take Press Pass too long to release a few images of what her new NASCAR trading cards will look like in 2010.  She will be part of every Press Pass 2010 product starting with Element which is due out on 1-20-10.  Her autographs and memorabilia cards will be included in products after Element.

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New 2010 Element Images

Press Pass started up their knew website today dedicated to their 2010 Wheels Element product that is due out in January.  A majority of the cards will be printed on recycled cardboard and you can look for (1) autograph and (1) relic card per box on average.  They also plan to insert $20.00 and $100.00 bills into random boxes.  These updated images look really nice.

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Card of the Day: Joey Logano 2009 Press Pass Element RC #19

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Fast Redemptions

Lets face it.  Most collectors don’t enjoy redemption cards.  You have no idea how long it will take, and you hope they send back what the card stated.  My favorite two companies to work with when it comes to redemptions would have to be Donruss/Playoff and Press Pass, Inc.  I have only pulled two redemption cards from each company, but each has followed through quite fast.  In my opinion, Press Pass, Inc has been the faster program.  If you remember last month I busted a box of 2009 Element Racing and pulled two Missing Element redemptions.  As soon as I opened the box I redeemed both cards, and within the last few weeks I have received both.  In my experience this is the fastest redemption process I have ever been through.  Topps and Upper Deck take way too long sometimes.

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2009 Press Pass Element Racing Review

2009 Press Pass Element Racing has to be one of the most educational card releases in history.  Not only does it educate the collector about the sport of NASCAR, but also the science.  Did you know that some cars are fitted with a radiator intake that channels cooler outside air through the radiator flues to keep the water temperature at an acceptable level?  If not, these are the types of things you will learn when busting a product like this.  

Every hobby box contains 24 packs, with 5 cards per pack.  Each box should have at least one autograph and one relic.  Now, lets break this box down and see what Sports Card Info thinks.

Key:

5 Tires = Perfect
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1 Tire = Poor
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Design: Photobucket

This is the first trading card set that I have seen which brings a lot of science to the hobby.  Almost every base card in the set looks like an element on the periodic table.  I have never seen this design used before.  The rookie cards are very easy to locate because the word “rookie” is stamped right on the front.  That may sound like a very common sense thing to do, but in today’s hobby some manufacturers still make finding the rookie cards difficult.  2009 Element Racing contains a ton of inserts and parallels that will keep collectors hunting for years.  The Combustion set looks very nice, but since it has black borders that makes them easy targets for being chipped and could hurt if a collector wants to get them graded.  My favorite insert design within this product would have to be the Kinetic Energy cards.  They all have a refractor like finish that gives the card a special glow.

Price:  Photobucket

A hobby box of 2009 Elements Racing can range in price from $70.00 to $85.00.   If collectors are looking for that huge hit that will pay for the box, I don’t think the odds are going to be with you.  This product is made for set collectors, and it seems to be within the price range for that type of product.  Even though my box contained three hits that almost would pay for a full hobby box, there will be those boxes that may just have two basic hits and might pay for half.

Hit Quality:  Photobucket

On the outside of the box it states that you should receive one autograph and one memorabilia card per box.  My box contained three hits which makes me think that there could be other boxes out there with better than average hits.  The box I received contained:

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Jimmie Johnson Race Used Tire #’ed/48

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Greg Biffle Blue Ink Autograph

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Jeff Gordon Race Used White Flag #’ed/75

Since ’09 Elements is a set builders product, the hits you are most likely going pull aren’t going to pay for the box.  Some collectors may like that and others may not.  I think my box contained some really nice hits.  I would be careful when placing a Race Used Tire card in a penny sleeve.  When I did it, I found that the window around the tire was slightly raised higher than the average relic placed into a card which resulted in the sleeve catching the card.  I don’t think that tire relics should be placed on a dark background.  I almost didn’t recognize it when I opened the pack.  The same goes for white flag cards.

Overall: Photobucket  

Overall, I give 2009 Element Racing 4 out of 5 possible tires.  It was very fun to open and the set design is unique.  The box I received contained three hits instead of the normal two.  Set builders will love going after all the parallels and inserts.  Even if your not that big of a racing fan, I would suggest stepping out of your “element” and giving a box of this stuff a try.

THANKS PRESS PASS, INC.

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