2014 Press Pass Racing Box Break & Review

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Very little has changed with this product’s overall design.  Press Pass just makes a few minor changes to the set each year.  I’d have to say that my favorite looking cards are the die-cut Aerodynamic autographs.

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Boxes are currently selling for $67.00

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This is Press Pass’s flagship racing product.  Its mainly for set collectors and not for your fast high-dollar thrill seekers.  This is the first time that Press Pass has included at least (1) relic and (1) autograph per box for this product.

I pulled the following:

Auto

  • Clint Bowyer Press Pass Signings #’ed/75

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Relic

  • Greg Biffle Burning Rubber Race-Used Victory Tire –  6/16/13 Michigan International Raceway #’ed/75

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Parallels

  • Jeff Gordon Ground Crew Black/White #’ed/70
  • Danica Patrick Snapshots Black/White #’ed/70
  • Austin Dillon Blue #’ed/35

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Inserts

  • Carl Edwards Replay #2
  • Jimmie Johnson Replay #18
  • Kevin Harvick Replay #9
  • David Ragan Replay #10
  • Matt Kenseth Replay #22
  • Jimmie Johnson Velocity #5
  • Dale Earnhardt Jr Velocity #1
  • Carl Edwards Cup Chase Contest Card #5

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Rookies

  • Justin Allgaier #41
  • (2) Austin Dillon #42
  • (2) Kyle Larson #43

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Overall, I give 2014 Press Pass Racing 2.5 hot dogs out of 5 (1=poor & 5=perfect).  It is what it is.  Nothing dramatically different.  Collectors will eat it up because its the only choice they have.

Does 2014 Press Pass Five Star Racing Offer Anything New?

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Topps isn’t the only dude on the block that can use the Five Star name.  Press Pass has been known to throw it around once in awhile too.  The last time Press Pass issued Five Star Racing was back in 2010.  Up until now, we hadn’t seen it again.  Boxes will include the following:

  • 1 Book Card—All book cards contain autograph(s) and memorabilia (#’d to 15 or less)
  • 1 Autographed Memorabilia card (#’d to 50 or less)
  • 1 Autograph card (#’d to 10 or less) OR Auto’d Memorabilia card
  • 1 Memorabilia card — 1, 2, 3, 4, or 5 swatches (#’d to 25 or less)
  • 1 Base card (#d to 15 or less)

Just like Press Pass did in 2010, they will be randomly inserting Instant Win cards.  These cards can be redeemed for “NASCAR 50 Greatest Drivers” signed lithos.

Five Star is by far Press Pass’s most expensive product.  I’m sure it will be around the same price range as it was three years ago.  NASCAR fans don’t have a lot of options when it comes to cards like baseball, football, basketball, and hockey fans do.  Press Pass truly dominates the NASCAR card market.  This can lead to a lack of innovation since they virtually have no competitors.  Sure this product will be limited (only 800 boxes plan to be made) but this stuff looks like the same things we see all the time within their other products.  I’d want to see something different before spending that much money on a box.  The Instant Win cards for 2014 even seem to be a bit watered down compared to 2010.  Collectors could pull Instant Win cards for artwork and even signed race-used helmets back then.

So, to answer the question that is asked in the title of this post I would have to say no.  Shadow Box, sketch, and hand painted art cards are just a few things NASCAR collectors would like to see.  Press Pass sure innovated in 1996 with their 7-card Burning Rubber set.  Those were some of the first relic cards.  Then again, Press Pass wasn’t the only manufacturer making NASCAR cards either at that time.

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Now I’m hungry for Jimmy John’s.

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If Topps used boxes like this on their Five Star products, collectors would go postal.

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2013 Press Pass Legends Racing Box Break & Review

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Some of the cards look similar to other products that Press Pass has issued.  This goes for most of the base.  The Signature Style and Pieces Of History cards in my opinion look the best.  I really like the gradient color flow with the faded photo in the background when it comes to the Pieces Of History cards.  Press Pass has significantly improved the design of those.

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Boxes are currently selling for $124.00.

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2013 Press Pass Legends Racing continues to use the classic mini box format.  Every master box contains 3 mini boxes.  Inside each mini box you’ll find two “hits”.

I pulled the following:

Autos

  • Richard Petty Legends Base Black Press Plate Auto #’ed 1/1
  • Warren Johnson Auto #’ed/150
  • Maurice Petty Auto #’ed/150

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Relics

  • Don Prudhomme Pieces Of History Driver-Worn Shirt #’ed/50
  • Danica Patrick Prominent Pieces Glove/Firesuit/Shoe Relic #’ed/25
  • Mark Martin – Mark Martin Salute Race-Used Firesuit #’ed/50

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Parallels

  • Mark Martin – Mark Martin Salute #50 Red #’ed/99
  • Alan Kulwicki Tribute #59 Gold #’ed/149
  • Bill Elliot Famous Feats #FF3 Holofoil #’ed/99
  • Dale Jarrett Famous Feats #FF1 Holofoil #’ed/99
  • Shirley Muldowney Legend #24 Red #’ed/99
  • Paul Goldsmith Legend #14 Red #’ed/99
  • Mario Andretti Legend #4 Red #’ed/99
  • Ned Jarrett Legend #18 Red #’ed/99
  • Jeff Gordon NASCAR Sprint Cup Series #44 Gold #’ed/149
  • Tom McEwen Legend #22 Gold #’ed/149
  • “Tiger” Tom Pistone Legend #31 Gold #’ed/149

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Inserts

  • Remembering Davey Allison #8
  • Ernie Irvan Famous Feats #FF7
  • Richard Petty Famous Feats #FF4
  • Harry Gant Signature Style #SS12
  • Don Prudhomme Signature Style #SS6
  • Richard Petty Signature Style #SS1

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Overall, I give 2013 Press Pass Legends Racing 4 checkered flags out of 5 (1=poor & 5=perfect).  Of all the racing products Press Pass makes, I’ve historically had the best luck with their Legends brand.  It always has been, and continues to be my favorite racing product.

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Flashback Product of the Week: 1931 Ogden’s Racing Pigeons

Doping scandals aren’t anything new.  Not a day goes by that you don’t see a report talking about how some star athlete violated the rules by taking a banded substance.  Its very common in today’s world of sports.  One story though caught my eye a few days ago that made me laugh.  Apparently people have been doping their racing pigeons with cocaine and painkillers hoping that it makes their birds perform better.  I don’t know about you, but I sure wouldn’t want to be around a bunch of cocaine addicted pigeons.  That’s a horror movie just waiting to happen.  Doping within the world of pigeon racing has been around since 2001, and people have always been trying out strange ways to lighten their pigeon’s weight so they can fly faster.  No sport is safe from cheaters.

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Upon hearing this news, it got me thinking about whether or not the sport of pigeon racing has ever had a card set.  The answer is yes.  Ogden’s Cigarettes issued a 50-card set within cigarette packs in 1931.  The set features famous racing pigeons of the time.  No one card from the set is really worth more than any of the others.  The demand for pigeon racing sets sure isn’t high.  Complete sets depending on the condition can sell for $100.00 to $150.00.  Ogden’s is known for issuing some of the most colorful tobacco cards.

Pigeon racing can be an expensive sport.  A person recently purchased a racing pigeon for over $400,000.  One thing is for certain.  It doesn’t matter whether or not you “juice-up” your pigeon.  At the end of the day, they’ll always have a small pecker 🙂

2013 Press Pass Showcase Racing Box Break & Review

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While I’m not a fan of the white box autographs, the Prized Pieces Ink and Masterpieces Ink autographs came out nice.  Press Pass has also included some very colorful firesuit and sheet metal relics.  I couldn’t help but notice that the Studio Showcase and Showroom inserts are printed on acetate.  I like the smokey-clear design they gave to these cards.  In the future I would like to see some NASCAR silhouette acetate cards.

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Boxes are currently selling for $175.00.  Its one of the most expensive racing products they make.

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Boxes come with (4) packs – (3) packs plus (1) box topper.  Each box should have at least (1) autograph and (2) relics.  The card found in the box topper pack will be numbered to 20 or 13.  These do randomly contain autographs and relics.

I pulled the following:

Auto/Relic

  • Carl Edwards Prized Pieces Ink-Silver Redemption

Relic

  • Matt Kenseth / Denny Hamlin / Kyle Busch Classic Collections Race-Used Sheet Metal #’ed/75
  • Trevor Bayne Prized Pieces Jumbo Race-Used Sheet Metal #’ed/99

Parallels

  • Jeff Burton Gold #’ed/99
  • Bobby Labonte Series Standouts Gold #’ed/99
  • Jimmie Johnson Series Standouts Purple #’ed/13

Inserts

  • Kasey Kahne Showroom #’ed/299
  • Matt Kenseth Showroom #’ed/299
  • Kyle Busch Studio Showcase #’ed/299

Base

  • Trevor Bayne #’ed/349
  • Paul Menard #’ed/349
  • Kasey Kahne #’ed/349
  • Jeff Burton #’ed/99
  • Bobby Labonte Series Standouts #’ed/349
  • Jeff Gordon Elite Exhibit #’ed/349
  • Kevin Harvick Elite Exhibit #’ed/349

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Overall, I give 2013 Press Pass Showcase Racing an average 3 fireballs out of 5 (1=poor & 5=perfect).  I was kinda bummed when I saw that my autograph was a redemption.  Press Pass is moving in the right direction by including clear acetate cards, but its a lot of the same type of stuff we’ve seen for years.  I want to see some innovation.

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2014 Press Pass Racing Preview

If there is one sport that could benefit from newly driven card printing processes, it would be NASCAR.  But since Press Pass is the main manufacturer behind NASCAR and has very little competition, collectors probably won’t be seeing many Shadow Box, Glass, sketch, acetate, or hand painted art cards.  Its a shame because I think they could have a lot of fun with those designs.  Maybe they’ll surprise us when they bring back Five Star Racing.

Either way, here is a look at 2014 Press Pass Racing.  Its their flagship racing brand.  This year you’ll find (1) on-card autograph, and (1) relic card per box.  I know.  It looks no different than previous years.  You would think that Press Pass would want to make their cards look as unique as possible from year to year since the selection of NASCAR drivers doesn’t change that much.  If they had more competition I believe this would happen.   

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2013 Press Pass Legends Racing Preview

Its that time of year again.  Legends Racing has been around since 2005, and is a fan favorite with collectors.  From my personal experience, some of the best racing “hits” I’ve pulled come from this brand.  Every master box contains three mini boxes.  Inside each mini box you’ll find two “hits”.

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These Pieces of History cards look very nice.  On-card autograph, faded funny car image, and a lightly colored background make for a nice design.  The only thing that comes to mind when I see these is whether or not they should have been made horizontally.

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The design on these looks a little too boxy.  Especially when it comes to the photograph.

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Now that’s what I’m talking about!  The horizontal design allows more room for the signature.

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Once again, too boxy.