The glint of the aluminum grandstands didn’t matter to Brad Keselowski, watching a replica of the car he inherited from Rusty Wallace circle the track as a video montage honoring the illustrious Hall of Famer’s career played in the background.

It wasn’t hard to imagine why 160,000 fans once filled NASCAR’s Colosseum twice a year to cheer lustily for his predecessor at Penske Racing. And it was just as easy to dream about being the next object of such affection.

”I can’t help but think how lucky I am to get to drive a car that’s an icon,” Keselowski said, standing next to Wallace in the track’s victory lane during an event showcasing a throwback paint scheme he drove at Bristol last month. ”And it’s because Rusty made it an icon. There’s not many drivers out there — only Dale (Earnhardt) and Jeff Gordon can say they created an icon.