NASCAR ROTY RANKINGS 1989: Ranking the Rookie of the Year Classes Through the Years

Runner-up Hut Striklin
Join me as we take a look at every NASCAR Cup Rookie of the Year class from 1972 (the start of the modern era) through 2021, going from the worst to the first in terms of overall careers of each year’s rookie class.


Winner: Dick Trickle (Stavola).  Runners Up: Hut Stricklin (Osterlund), Larry Pearson (David Pearson), Jimmy Spencer (Baker-Schiff), Rick Mast (Mach 1), Ben Hess (Hess).  Aborted Attempts: Chad Little (Donlavey), Butch Miller (Miller), Mickey Gibbs

How their careers turned out: This class was a real mixed-bag.  Dick Trickle saw FAR greater success on the short-tracks of the midwest, while Larry Pearson was a Busch Series champion.  Jimmy Spencer had two Cup wins, while Hut Stricklin seemed to always lose his rides (and sponsors) to Mr. Excitement.  Rick Mast famously won the pole for the inaugural Brickyard 400, while Ben Hess infamously DNQ’d for more races than he started.

“Fun” “Fact” about the winner: I met Dick Trickle at one of his final Cup Series starts—no wonder he retired.

Ranking: #33 out of 50 updated four times weekly

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