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Wednesday, July 22, 2015

Hut Stricklin #12 Raybestos Brakes Buick

    Hut Stricklin was probably one of the greatest drivers never to win a Cup race~ He just never landed a good ride during his tenure in the series, and the one time he did manage to get a somewhat decent ride (1995 - King Racing), the team shut down at the end of the year~ I believe he would have won a few races had Bernstein kept the team going for the 1996 season~ He also finished 14th in the 2000 Brickyard 400, driving for Junie Dunlavey, with barely enough crew members, and serving as his own crew chief.. that in itself is a very impressive feat~ However, I'm going to stick to writing about his time in Bobby Allison's #12 car for this post~

    His first race for the team came in the 9th race of the 1990 season, the Winston 500 @ Talladega~ A native of Alabama, this was considered to be his home track~ Stricklin qualified 18th, and drove the car to a 9th place finish, one lap off the pace~ His next top 10 came in the Miller Genuine Draft 500 @ Pocono, where he started 21st, and finished 6th~ He ended the year with 2 top 10's, and finished 28th in the final points standings~

                                                   Hut Stricklin's 1990 Raybestos Buick~
Hut Stricklin #12 Racing Champions 1/64 NASCAR diecast blog Bobby Allison

    The 1991 season was the best season of Hut's career~ He finished 6th in the Coca-Cola 600 @ Charlotte, leading 19 laps, and followed that up with another 6th place run in the Budweiser 500 @ Dover~ In the Miller Genuine Draft 400 @ Michigan, Hut qualified the car 9th, and finished 2nd to fellow Alabama native Davey Allison~ He also led the race for 27 laps~

    In the Miller Genuine Draft 500 @ Pocono, Stricklin qualified 6th, led 7 laps, and finished 4th~ He scored another top 5 in the Peak Antifreeze 500 @ Dover, where he qualified 19th, and finished in 4th~ By the end of the season, he had 3 top 5's, and 7 top 10's, finishing a career best 16th in the final points standings~

    His final season with the team came in 1992, where he ran 21 races with them before being replaced by Jeff Purvis~ During this season, the team swapped from Buick to Chevrolet~ They would swap to Ford's following the Bud 500 @ Bristol~ His first top 10 of the season came in the GM Goodwrench 500 @ Rockingham, where he finished 9th~

    He followed that up the next race with another 9th place finish in the Pontiac Excitement 400 @ Richmond~ In the Food City 500 @ Bristol, Hut picked up his best qualifying effort of the season, starting 5th, and scored another top 10, finishing in the 8th position, although 5 laps down~ His final top 10 in the car came in the Budweiser 500 @ Dover, where he started the car in the 23rd position, and came home 7th, 2 laps off the pace of the leaders~

                                      Hut Stricklin's Raybestos Lumina 1992 with son Taylor~
Hut Stricklin #12 Raybestos Brakes Buick Racing Champions 1/64 NASCAR diecast blog

    Hut's final start in the car came in the Mountain Dew Southern 500 @ Darlington, where he rolled off 23rd, and finished in 11th place, 1 lap down~ He then ran 4 races for Junie Dunlavey (Richmond, Dover, Martinsville, and North Wilksboro), 1 for Junior Johnson (Charlotte), and finished the season driving the final 2 races for Larry Hedrick, (Phoenix and Atlanta) driving the #41 Kellogg's Chevrolet~

                                                Hut Stricklin #12 Raybestos Brakes Buick~
Hut Strickline #12 Raybestos Racing Champions 1/64 NASCAR diecast blog Bobby Allison Winston Cup
                                                              Click pics to enlarge~
Hut Strickline #12 Raybestos Racing Champions 1/64 NASCAR diecast blog Bobby Allison Winston Cup

                                  
    I always thought this was a cool paint scheme back in the day~ It's a shame that Allison wasn't as good at being a car owner as he was a driver~ The team just never was up to par with the rest of the field, and Hut really had to wheel the car to get the results that he had in it~ This specific car has a few defects straight out of the packaging~ 

    If you'll notice about Hut's name, the blue is showing through the white, and there is a chip in the paint above the Goodyear tire contingency that was like that straight from the packaging~ Other than that, RC did a good job on the car, and the card looks cool as well~ I give the car a C+ rating overall~

    As I said earlier, I truly believe Hut Stricklin was plagued throughout his career with having to drive for sub-par teams~ If he would have been in Mike Skinner's #31 car, I guarantee that car would have won some races~ Hut had the ability to get the job done, he just didn't have much to work with~ He was an underrated driver for all of his career, that just didn't get the credit he deserved due to driving for underfunded teams~ Below are some clips spanning throughout his career, enjoy, and as always, thank you for stopping by the blog!~ 

                                   Top 10 unluckiest NASCAR drivers~ #6 - Hut Stricklin~
                                      

1989 Bud @ the Glen - Petty Stricklin spin~
                                       

   1991 Diehard 500 - Stricklin Bodine wreck~
 

1991 Bud 500 - Multi-car wreck w/ Hut~
  

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