Humpy Wheeler and his grandson Austin Hardy have brought “Doc Hudson” from the Pixar movie Cars to life and they will be sharing him with the public during the 2014 Great Race from Maine to Florida. Wheeler, the former president of Charlotte Motor Speedway and general NASCAR promoter for decades, was the voice of “Tex” in the movie Cars, and he has dedicated the build of this Fabulous Hudson Hornet to his longtime friend, the late Paul Newman who was the voice of “Doc.”
Wheeler was more than just a voice in the movie. He worked closely with the producers and directors of the film, including input on scenery for tracks.
But the Great Race is a new challenge for him and his grandson. They will be part of the largest rookie class ever in the Great Race — 39. Austin will turn 16 just before the race, and his grandfather calls him a “young Michael Waltrip.”
The Great Race is full of wonderful and exotic vehicles, and “Doc Hudson” will be one of the biggest hits. Other crowd favorites and sure to be a 1969 “General Lee” Charger, a 1931 Auburn boattail speedster, a 1917 Peerless “Green Dragon” speedster, a 1937 Bugatti Atlantic and a 1935 Bentley.