Disney•Pixar CARS Ride Along Races into Richard Petty Speedway at Walt Disney World

Does your child have a need for speed?  Do they dream of putting the pedal to the metal?  Or do they just imagine a world where they can race alongside Lightning McQueen for their own chance to win the Piston Cup?  Then continue reading for photos and details of the CARS ride along experience added to Walt Disney World’s Richard Petty Speedway.

Walt Disney World CARS Junior Ride-Along

All of these things are possible at the Richard Petty Driving Experience at the Walt Disney World Speedway.  Building on their longstanding relationship with Pixar (Richard Petty provided the voice of The King in the CARS animated features) two all new Piston Cup Racers are part of a unique junior ride along experience at the speedway.

This experience isn’t just a chance for your child to hop into a car and go zipping around a race track – it’s a chance to become part of the experience of the Cars movies.  Jay Ward, Creative Director of the Cars franchise for Pixar stated that they wanted total authenticity when designing these cars; they want children to be able to “immerse themselves in the CARS world.”

Walt Disney World CARS Junior Ride-Along

Pixar’s Jay Ward describing the Walt Disney World CARS Junior Ride-Along

And it’s clear that they haven’t skipped a single detail in planning – from a windshield wrap that features the distinctive animated eyes that are an essential part of Cars characters, to the creative and humorous advertising paint jobs, these cars look like they just drove off the movie screen.  The moment the car thunders up to the load in area, children have a chance to jump in and join this animated world.  As the car races around each turn and they look out at the world through the car’s eyes, kids can live their own dreams of being Lightning McQueen.

Walt Disney World CARS Junior Ride-Along

True to the story of the Cars movies each of the new Piston Cup racers that are part of the ride along experience have their own backstory.  Number 28, Aiken Axler, won the Rookie of the Year honors in his first full season of Piston Cup competition.  Off the track Axler enjoys maintaining his form by doing laps and practicing a form of meditation called Tai Rod.

Walt Disney World CARS Junior Ride-Along

Number 80, Sage VanDerSpin, was the youngest winner of the Junior Piston Cup Pro Series.  When not doing laps, VanDerSpin enjoys playing dodgeball with his fellow racers.

Walt Disney World CARS Junior Ride-Along

But don’t be fooled by the cute stories and exteriors – the cars inside are pure muscle and kids will get a thrill out of tearing up the track at breakneck speeds for three laps.  Of course safety is a priority and the cars have been specially outfitted with a child-sized seat, have a 5-point harness and special head and neck restraints.

Walt Disney World CARS Junior Ride-AlongWalt Disney World CARS Junior Ride-AlongWalt Disney World CARS Junior Ride-Along

Race fans from ages 6 – 13 can ride along with a pro driver as they fly through laps on the speedway, as long as they are at least 48 inches tall.  The price of the junior ride along is $59 and they are offered from 9am to 4pm daily at the Walt Disney World Speedway, on a first-come, first-serve basis.

Walt Disney World CARS Junior Ride-AlongWalt Disney World CARS Junior Ride-AlongWalt Disney World CARS Junior Ride-Along

Cristen Curley-Edwards was born and raised in New York City, but relocated to Florida’s Gulf Coast in 2012. When she’s not working with students as a middle school educator, she can be found practicing yoga or enjoying the attractions at most Central Florida area theme parks.  For more family travel news, reviews, and trip reports, be sure to follow Adventures by Daddy on twitter and “like” our facebook page too.

About Cristen Curley-Edwards