|the back of the card is just blank white cardboard|
However, luck was on my side, as I was cruising through COMC during the Spring Cleaning Sale earlier in 2017. I saw this card...and it was only $13 and change. I didn't really believe my eyes...I thought there must have been some mistake. It was mislabeled at COMC, not listed as an autograph...(eventually corrected before I actually shipped it) I had never seen any cards from this five card insert before, but I know enough about cards, and although I did not possess one in my collection, I recognized Jeff's signature. I couldn't click "Buy Now" fast enough! It WAS labeled as having a bottom right corner ding...I was willing to risk it because it's not every day I can add Jeff's autograph to my collection- but it's really so minuscule that it wasn't really worth noting. Yes, it's there if you know where to look, but it's limited to the white border, and it's a JEFF GORDON AUTOGRAPH!
And when I say big gun...I mean it. This card is huge. It's 7 3/4th inches tall, and 5 and 5/8th inches wide, making it one of the largest cards in my collection- and quite probably the physically largest card in my NASCAR collection.
I have wanted an autograph of Jeff since 1994...that was the first year autograph cards became a big deal in NASCAR, though there might have been some previously...I don't actually remember. I got my first in 1994. The first lap of NASCAR racing I ever saw happened to be the first lap Jeff would ever lead...he would add 25,000 more over the next 23 years en route to 93 career wins, third all time.
Ironically, Jeff is my favorite of the Big 4...yet was the only one without an autograph in my collection. (Richard Petty, David Pearson, Dale Earnhardt). Not anymore!
Of the top 10 race winners in NASCAR history, I now have the autograph of six or possibly seven of them. I know I'm missing Darrell Waltrip (5th, 84 wins) and Cale Yarborough (7th, 83 wins) but I can't remember if I ever got Rusty Wallace's signature. I'm really slacking because I used to be able to remember everybody in my autograph collection. (UPDATE: No, I checked my records, I'm missing Rusty) 10th place Lee Petty is not available as he did not sign any cards before he passed away in 2000. He might have a cut signature but no chance I could afford that.
Jeff was the key name missing from my collection...but I can finally, almost unbelievably even to myself, say...no more!