‘Cars’ Inspired Racers Join The Richard Petty Driving Experience For Junior Ride Alongs At Disney

There’s an all-new way for mini “Cars” fans to experience the world of “Cars” – at 90+ miles per hour. At the Richard Petty Driving Experience at Walt Disney World kids ages 6 – 13 years old (and at least 48 inches tall) can experience a junior ride along in one of the two new Piston Cup cars that look like they are straight out of the movie.

Richard Petty Sage VanDerSpin Cars Disney
Richard Petty Cars Aiken Axler Disney
Racers Sage VanDerSpin (blue) and Aiken Axler (orange) recently joined the fleet of vehicles at Richard Petty, equipped with specialy seats designed for junior racers. And in my daughter’s words, they are “so awesome.”

K was invited to Richard Petty last month for the ride of her life, and my Danica Patrick fan could not have been more excited. Since daddy went to work at NASCAR a couple of years ago, my girls have become huge race fans. So taking a ride in a “real” race car was more than just a thrill ride – to K it was her chance to be like her favorite racers.

Because K has always been my timid child, I worried that she would get up to the car and loose her cool. But she never did. She waited anxiously in line with the other junior riders until it was her turn, and then she suited up.

OMG – isn’t she the cutest little racer you ever did see? (This was the grin on her face as she left the track after her ride.)

Richard Petty Junior Ride Along Disney
Just like in NASCAR, riders have to enter through the window (because there are no doors). Apparently, K thought that was a great idea because the next day she asked dad if should could get in the car through the window. 

Richard Petty Junior Ride Along NASCAR
After the ride I learned that the cars are equipped with video cameras inside and out, and each rider has the opportunity to purchase a video of their experience. How could a parent resist?!

This is K as she takes three laps around the track – at about 90 miles per hour.

Was I nervous? You bet! Actually, I didn’t give it a second thought until the moment she walked up to the car in that giant race suit, then I had a momentary freak out moment where I thought, “What have I done?!”

But all was well, and as she grinned from ear to ear I took comfort in a conversation I had earlier with Bill Scott, general manager of Richard Petty Driving Experience at Walt Disney World Speedway. As he explained all of the special safety features he told me, “She’s safer in our cars on the track then she is in a mini van on I-4.” Which is probably very true.

This is the video I took as she speed around the track.

The Richard Petty experience is a thrilling ride for kids and adults. While junior riders race in tricked out cars designed by Jay Ward, adult riders can go full-throttle at 137 miles per hour either as a driver or a ride-along experience.

The Junior Ride Along experience costs $59 and is available from 9 am – 4 pm on a first-come, first-serve basis.

Would I do it again? You bet! But next time, I want to suit up too!

Richard Petty Junior Ride Along Disney World Nascar

Comments

  1. This has to be the COOLEST thing EVER! I just showed it to my boys and they are so jealous!

  2. Tell K she’s my hero.
    I’m turning 41 in a few weeks and I don’t think I’m brave enough to jump in a race car, even with a pro!

  3. What an exciting experience for your kids! My kids would have loved that!

  4. Ok, my son would love this! It looks like so much fun!

  5. Whoa I had no idea that Disney was doing this! I wonder if they let adults do it too? LOL I want to go!

    • They do, they do! You can’t ride in the “Cars” car, but they have other race cars (and exotic cars) that you can ride in OR drive!!! My husband drove one :)

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