NASCAR's Tony Stewart is Proof That "Dreams" Do Come True

Sal Sigala Jr.Senior Analyst IApril 18, 2010

PHOENIX - APRIL 09: Tony Stewart, driver of the #14 Office Depot/Old Spice Chevrolet, stands on the grid during qualifying for the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Subway Fresh Fit 600 at Phoenix International Raceway on April 9, 2010 in Phoenix, Arizona.  (Photo by Geoff Burke/Getty Images for NASCAR)
Geoff Burke/Getty Images

Yeah, you reach for the golden ring, reach for the sky; baby just spread your wings. We’ll get higher and higher straight up we’ll climb.

These few lyrics written by Van Halen from their blockbuster hit “Dreams,“ had me thinking about one driver who has been steadily making that climb to the top.

Step by step, he continues to ascend into the secret places, which have been set apart for those drivers who choose to find success beyond their wildest imagination.

In an era where NASCAR is still searching for that one driver that the fans can readily call the next big superstar, all you have to do is look into the eyes of a driver who has had more then his share of problems, as well as controversy while making a name for himself in one of the toughest racing series that is out there today.

Tony Stewart's dream began back in 1987, when he won the World Karting Association Championship at the age of 16.

Ever since he got his first taste of what winning was all about, it turned into a passion that would see his racing career flourish while racing in the U.S.A.C. series, and at the same time he would begin to rapidly stockpile award after award that almost seemed endless.

It became more then evident, that any time Stewart would get behind the wheel of these open wheel gasoline burning beasts, victory was waiting for him at every track that he traveled to across this great country of ours.

Stewart only knows one way of approaching each race, and that is to be as aggressive while at the same time having that rough and tough style of driving that has also fueled his troublesome attitude since he made his Series debut in 1999.

By the time he was 31 years of age, Stewart had already won championships in the Winston Cup, Nextel Cup, and Indy Car Series.

He has also won championships in USAC, and the IROC Series which just added even more to the impact that Stewart would have on the entire racing world.

What exactly was it that fueled the desire within this Columbus, Indiana native to excel at a sport that is not only very dangerous, but also is very hard to make stay on top especially when you look around at all the talent that is out there?

Many of auto racing's biggest superstars have made at least one stop during their own journey, to test the waters of what new adventure driving a stock car would bring.

Whether it was a brief stint in the now defunct I.R.O.C. series, or stopping by to test their skills behind the wheel of a late model on one of the many short tracks across the country.

Stewart ran with his dream, and so far has taken it beyond what others could only dream about.

At the age of 38, Stewart showed the racing world that dreams do come true, and that there is no goal out there that can’t be reached as long you have enough faith in yourself.

Stewart left the confines of JGR to do things his way, in hopes of making his dream a reality.

Doing it his way, has always been the way that Stewart has approached his everyday challenges.

Stewart has more then exceeded his career expectations, and with his 400th career start coming at Texas, he can add that the list of his many accomplishments along with picking the 11th pole of his career.

"I'm not really much of a qualifier, but it shows what Darian Grubb and all the guys at Stewart-Haas, how hard the work they've been doing and this is the result," said Stewart during the post qualifying news conference.

It's been smooth sailing so far this season, and Stewart has yet to hit any bumps as of yet.

Stewart is continuing to make his presence felt, while at the same time he continues to leave his footprints at each and every track that he visits.

Stewart is no stranger to entering unknown territory, so as the season progresses it’s going to get very interesting exactly where his dream will take him.

Looking back to his first win as an owner-driver on June 7 at Pocono, it was only a matter of time before Stewart would revisit an old friend that goes by the name of, “victory.”

“This was our first one with a point win. So this is the only first that we’re going to have in this situation,” said Stewart after reaching his first goal as an owner.

Stewart also added that, “The rest of them are just going to be a number and stats down the road. So the first win is special.”

That win along with putting both his cars in last season's chase for the Sprint cup championship, was enough to prove to himself that dreams do come true.