Originally posted on Fox Sports  |  Last updated 1/17/12

CHARLOTTE, NC - MAY 23: Hall of Fame inductee Richard Petty speaks during the 2010 NASCAR Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony at the Charlotte Convention Center on May 23, 2010 in Charlotte, North Carolina. (Photo by Streeter Lecka/Getty Images)
NASCAR legend Richard Petty didn't flinch when asked which of the sport's current drivers would one day join him as esteemed members of the NASCAR Hall of Fame. "You've got your Jimmie Johnson and Jeff Gordon for sure,'' Petty said last week. "And Tony Stewart. "It gets a little tougher to predict after that.'' As NASCAR prepares to induct its third membership class into the sport's Hall of Fame in Charlotte, NC, this week, it raises an interesting question. Who among the starting field for the upcoming Feb. 26 Daytona 500 will some day be immortalized there as well? Johnson's historic five consecutive Sprint Cup championships makes him a shoo-in. Gordon's four titles and position on the all-time wins list (third overall with 85 wins, and counting) makes him a first-ballot nominee. After picking up his third Cup title in November, the former IndyCar champion Stewart has assured himself a NASCAR Hall of Fame ring, too. As "The King" said, it gets harder to guess beyond this th...
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