The Race That Started It All

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"Okay, here we go...


Speed. I am speed.

One winner. 42 losers.

I eat losers for breakfast!

...Breakfast? Wait, maybe I should have had breakfast? A little breckkie could be good for me-

No, no, no, stay focused.


I'm faster than fast, quicker than quick!

I am Lightning!"


He went flying down the track, fast as lightning—if not faster—as he and his fans always claim. He was nothing but a red blur rushing past, accented by a few strokes of orange and yellow from the gradient lightning bolt of halftone dots graciously plastered along both sides of his car, as he circled around the well-lit track. It's clear he was a true racer, domineering the track as if it were his own in his own backyard. Faster than fast, quicker than quick, down on that track he truly was Lightning. Lightning McQueen, that is.

The infamous rookie that joined the Piston Cup circuits that very season. A zero to hero one could say, coming into the spotlight completely unknown, but now everybody knows his name. Flashy he was, evidenced by his styled blonde hair, sharp racing suit, and shiny race car that might as well be defined as electrifying with all the bright fiery colors it sported. Very confident, maybe even too much so, as backed by the numerous crew chiefs he fired this one and only season alone because, as McQueen always claims, he's a "one-man show" and needs nobody else. Yet for some reason, it's that confident and cocky outlook that caught the eyes and hearts of many fans. Of course, also brash as most popular figures are, at least once the popularity and nationwide admiration gets into their heads. And to think that even now, in this very race, he is still a mere rookie even though he races like a longtime pro.

It hadn't taken him long to get to the head of the pack in this race. It never does, though. So up with the leaders, he cruises on along, always looking for the next opening to overtake his rival, Chick Hicks, and eventually, the legend that is The King. The legend racing his last race, trying to get that one last Piston Cup before retirement. The runner-up, the man who has always finished second—or sometimes third ever since McQueen showed up—to the King, always just a second too late and following in the leader's shadow. And finally, the rookie, on the verge of becoming the first in Piston Cup victory to get his hands on that prized golden trophy as a rookie. Three cars, points all tied up, racing tonight to see who would ultimately be the winner.

The three continued the ride, and eventually McQueen saw his chance from where he had been for the last few minutes, right behind Chick Hicks and riding his draft. He pulled ahead of the green racer, with his car completely overwhelmed with sponsor stickers, but Chick wasn't having it. Every so slightly touching the front of his car to the back corner of McQueen's bumper, he sent the rookie veering sharply to the side where he skidded to a halt in the grass.

Lightning grunted as he slapped his steering wheel in frustration, glaring eyes never leaving Chick's race car that was quickly disappearing around the turn. Slamming the gas pedal to the metal of his car, McQueen's tired fought to gain traction for a few seconds before he finally sped off of the greenery and back onto the track.

Up ahead, Chick cackled as he looked out his window to see the rookie at the back of the pack, two turns away from where he once was before Chick intervened. "Dinoco is all mine!" He declared aloud merrily to himself. Pulling the same stunt as before, he nudged the side of the racer next to him, which send the car flying into the wall and backwards into the racers behind. A huge crash ensued from behind the leaders, with cars skidding all over and sometimes even flying right off the ground and aimlessly into the air a few feet. Racers were forced onto their sides or even upside down completely as smoke from hundreds of skidding tires broke out into the air. "Get through that, McQueen!"

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