Tim Daland (Randy Quaid) is a NASCAR pit-boss who hopes to start a new team mid-season with Californian rookie racecar driver Cole Trickle (Tom Cruise) and disgraced pit-crew boss Harry Hogge (Robert Duvall). The problem is that Cole has only ever raced sprint cars, and all he knows about NASCAR and stock-car racing is just what he has seen on ESPN!
Our Rating: 8/10
Contributed By: WB
Tagline: You can't outrun the thunder.
- Country: USA
- Language: English | French
- Runtime: 147
- Budget: $60,000,000
- Revenue: $82,670,733
- Production: Don Simpson/Jerry Bruckheimer Films
Rowdy invites Cole to his bedside in hospital, and asks him to race his car in the Daytona 500. This is perfect for Cole, who is scared to race his own car after the accident.
The old team is assembled. Just before the race, the engine starts to leak.
Anyway soon the race is underway, and Cole isn't doing so well. Without his usual dangerous edge, he is stuck at the back.
A few cars collide and there is an almighty mess on the track - a huge smoke cloud with spinning and burning stock cars everywhere. ""You can drive right through it!"" Harry yells. Cole eases off the gas, and in a Top Gun 'Goose' type moment he gathers courage from a higher source and goes for it through the smoke cloud. He emerges safely out the other side a new man. He whoops, then slams on the gas and tells them he's outta there.
He starts picking up pace and making his way up the field but has still got to pit.
In the pit, a tyre bolt-gun jams and the pace car is quickly approaching. If he can't get out in time, he will be lapped and the race will be over. The engine stalls.
Suddenly Randy Quaid yells for all the mechanics from his rival team to jump the fence and help push Cole's car back onto the track. Cole makes it out just in time. Randy is warned by a race official, but tells him that it's his engine inside the car anyway and that's what they're pushing!
It's near the end of the race. Cole is just behind his rival Russ Wheeler and can't get past. They approach turn 4. Cole has something special planned, Russ knows he will try to pass on the outside again like he always does.
Cole goes high - then slides down low and slams the other driver into the wall - gaining the edge to take him over the line first.
The crowd go wild. Nicole Kidman is there for a victory kiss. Cole looks for his manager who is away from the crowd. Resting near the pit area, Cole and Harry have a catch-up chat. Then Harry races him back - to victory lane.