Winning: The Racing Life of Paul Newman (2015) Movie Script

You see, it was the Oscars.
People vote.
They say, "him," or, "her."
Don't hand me any of that crap.
In this, it isn't, "we vote,
and it's him and her."
You either cross the finish line
and it's either him or her.
How do people in show
business regard his racing?
I'm not sure they know he races.
Technically, I mean,
he was really a good driver.
He wanted to be looked
at as a driver,
Not as an academy award winner,
but as a man who was involved
with his heart and soul in racing.
He loved the big cars.
He loved the horsepower.
That was his thing.
He just wanted to go fast.
Racing became his passion,
and he went for it.
Paul Newman is going
to be the "C" production
1979 national champ.
The margin of victory...
6.3 seconds
between first and second.
I was born in January of 1924.
My brother came along 1 year,
3 days, and 10 hours later.
We grew up in a suburb
of Cleveland, shaker heights.
We were very close.
If somebody was picking on
my brother, I'd be there.
And I can remember Paul
stepping in on a couple
of occasions or more.
Most of our friends had the use
of cars before Paul and I did.
Dad never felt that that was
an essential thing,
even when we went to college,
we were in the service,
came back out of the service.
Did we have our own car?
And there is the checkered flag
for 500 winner Mario Andretti.
I met Paul Newman in 1967.
It was Bridgehampton,
Long Island... Can-Am race.
I was driving this car
that was called "the honker,"
and on race morning,
there's a big "Paul Newman"
on front of the car.
I saw Paul Newman is sponsoring.
All of a sudden,
there's Paul Newman and Joanne,
and I was totally starstruck.
Immediately, I invited him
to go in the cockpit,
and he was very taken with
all the gadgets and everything.
And then I took him for a ride.
And Bridgehampton is one
of those elevation tracks
and narrow, blind corners.
And, I mean,
it's really easy, sort of,
to impress somebody quickly.
And I noticed that, you know,
he was sort of white-knuckling.
I, quite honestly, think
that captured his imagination.
In 1968, I was cast with Paul
to do this film, "Winning."
All I want from you is to come
in first.
Both of us?
They wanted to have us be able
to drive on the tracks
with cameras mounted on the cars
so it looked like
we were really involved.
He's in trouble.
He seems to be out of gas
and heads for the pits.
And in order to do that,
we both had to be race drivers.
We had to learn
how to drive automobiles.
So we were sent
to the Bob Bondurant
School of Driving.
I'm Bob Bondurant here at Sears
Point International Raceway
and the Bondurant School.
Well, the studio called me
and said they were gonna
make this really good
movie... racing movie.
So Paul and Robert
came down to the school.
I said, "so, Paul, how come
you wanted to do this movie?"
He said, "I had two other movies
I could make a lot more money on,
but I always wanted to see
if I could drive a race car."
When he heard
about the Bondurant school,
He was eager to jump into it.
You know, one
of the greatest rewards
about having my own driving
school is being able to teach
other people how to learn
to drive better.
I think it was always
inside him somewhere, you know?
When he got involved in something,
he really turned it over.
He really investigated it.
He looked at every aspect of it.
And every aspect, I think,
that he looked at in the world
of racing was something
that attracted him.
And I took Paul with me
and teach how to do an oval,
taught him the line,
and then he went a little
quicker and quicker and quicker.
And he learned real well.
He listened really well.
He stayed out particularly late.
He kept going.
You know, I'd get out of the car
and be happy to get
out of the car,
but Paul, he really loved it.
Got the look
of eagles in his eyes.
I could see it.
I could see him starting.
And when he came
out of that picture,
that was a permanent lifetime
passion of his,
and it never diminished.
"Winning" was just completed
when we did "Butch Cassidy."
Listen, I don't mean
to be a sore loser, but,
When it's done,
if I'm dead, kill him.
Love to.
I first met him in a way
that probably made
indelible our friendship,
or at least my devotion to him,
because they were
casting the film,
"Butch Cassidy
and the Sundance Kid."
He was already cast.
He was a well-known name.
I was being approached
to play Butch Cassidy.
The original title of the film was
"the Sundance Kid
and Butch Cassidy"
'cause Paul was gonna play
The studio said no,
I wasn't enough of a name.
It seemed to center on the fact
of Paul's approval.
I had never met him,
so we went to meet him.
And after that meeting, Paul
just said, "I'll go with it.
I'll go with Redford."
Well, that ought to do it.
In the course of making the film,
we discovered that we had a lot
in common,
and we developed a friendship
that was
not unlike the two characters
in the film.
I'll jump first.
- Then you jump first.
- No, I said.
What's the matter with you?!
I can't swim!
Why, you crazy, the fall
will probably kill ya.
Oh, shi-I-I-I-I-I-I-t!
He would drive souped-up cars...
Volkswagen all jacked up...
But there were no
racing cars involved.
I had racing cars because
I'd been a lover of racing
since I was about 15.
When Paul and I met, by that time,
I had acquired a very special
racing car called a Porsche 904.
It was built for Sebring.
So that was the car I had
when we made "Butch Cassidy."
I knew of his love of cars
And so forth, so I said,
"you want to drive it?"
He took it to hand right away,
and it was pretty clear
that he had a natural ability
with the car.
When we saw each other
again, he was racing.
He had gone to this
school, graduated.
You started the whole
thing, Bondurant,
Whether you know it or not.
I mean, I remember
with some trepidation
the first time I went
from a two-liter Datsun sedan
into a formula Vee.
And it was right out of the box,
and no one had checked
camber or anything,
and the car just
lurched from one side of
the corner to the other,
and I thought, "boy,
if this is a racer,
I don't want to have
an awful lot to do with it."
He went on to the racing world.
That's what he
really wanted to do.
You could tell that this was
a big, big thing in his life.
The studios didn't
want him doing that.
If something happened to him,
it would involve
a great financial problem.
He meant so much to a movie.
I mean, if you get Paul Newman
to do a picture, I mean,
that was hundreds of millions
of dollars in profits for them.
And I dreamed about
this game, fat man.
I dreamed about this game
every night on the road.
I mean, they think of Paul.
what is he doing in a racer.
Is he crazy?
Let him do it for a couple of times,
then we'll take him out of it."
You know, that's their attitude.
In 1971, I was at Lime Rock
on a Tuesday testing,
and it was not unusual
for Jim Haynes,
who owned the track, to say,
"would you take so and so
from the Hartford courant,
the Norwalk hour,
The Stamford advocate,"
one of the newspapers,
"around for a couple laps?"
So I said, "sure.
Send him over."
It was Paul, in blue jeans
and sunglasses, and his son.
I didn't recognize him.
He didn't look like a plastic,
Hollywood guy to me.
So I took them both
around for a couple laps,
and somebody said, "that was
Paul Newman, wasn't it?"
I said, "it was Paul
something or other."
Well, and there was a place
called Bob Sharp Datsun.
So, that was sort of one
of those legendary places.
"Bob Sharp?"
You know, I'd go visit him.
I'd go, "my God,
that's Bob Sharp."
I'd watch it like the Beatles
were performing there,
and that's who he raced for.
He was 48 years old
when he started racing,
when most people are retiring.
Hi. I'm Sam Posey.
I used to drive cars
like this for a living.
It's been 17 years now
since I started racing.
And, recently,
I've tapered off a bit.
After all, racing's supposed
to be a young man's game.
We met right here
when he was first starting out.
He'd made the movie "Winning"
and kind of fallen in love
with racing.
I sort of made friends with him
and tried to help him
with his driving.
He was terrible at first.
At the beginning, I mean,
he was not very successful at all.
You know, he wasn't too quick.
He was just taking it all in,
easy, easy, easy, and practicing.
He knew how major
the skills and knowledge
that was necessary
to drive those racing cars.
He was very sensitive that
he wanted to learn the craft
of racing cars.
He knew
that it's very, very difficult
with celebrities who
are very professional.
They're used to being a winner,
and in racing, how do
you win the next month?
You got to pay your dues.
But I said, "Paul,
you will be a better driver
if you race an underpowered
car for a year or two.
You will learn
to not scuff off speed.
If you screw up, you want
to know, 'don't do that again.'"
He sensibly got a Datsun 510,
a small, boxy car.
And he wasn't racing Ferraris,
and he wasn't racing 'm...
He was racing Datsuns.
It was something
the average guy could aspire to.
He didn't live at the top
of the food chain with the cars.
He started at the middle or,
as some would say, even lower level
and earned the respect
of the average guy.
He would come on Tuesdays when
the track was open for practice.
So there'd be other
cars on the track,
but he would make a lot of laps.
You're always competing
with yourself.
You're trying to bring a little
extra to your performance.
The objective is just
to get the car through each turn
as fast as it can possibly go.
For some drivers,
I think that's intuitive.
I kind of see
that they're pantsing.
My own approach has just
been to work up to the limit
a step at a time.
He slowly just chipped away at it.
He would pound around
at Lime Rock,
just pound around,
pound around, pound around,
and just, he got better
and better and better.
When I started out in racing,
I knew that the guys
were saying, "oh,
balloon foot out there."
I said, "well,
that's their problem," 'cause
I'm a slow study, and I know
it's gonna take me a long time.
But you can't quit simply
because they're laughing at ya.
And one thing that you learn
in acting is to go out there
in order to do it right,
you have to do it wrong.
And the same things
is true in racing.
I crashed the car 'cause I
was just too eager, that's all.
I knew, you know,
that you've got
to drive your own race.
Can't drive somebody else's.
So I got sucked
into that and made a mistake.
Paul knew the importance
of learning a skill
just as the importance
of learning the skill of acting.
He was not good when he
started, and he admits that.
But as he worked and developed
and worked and developed,
he became a very good actor.
Now, you look here.
You've had 24 of my 34 years
working for you on this ranch,
and, daddy, you have had
top-grade cheap labor.
But it took a while
to realize that that was not
his "A-One" passion.
It was really cars... racing.
So when he realized that,
he went at it hammer and tongs.
I mean, he went at it fully.
Well, he approached it a bit
like, in a way, in his acting.
We got a racehorse here,
a thoroughbred.
You make him feel good.
I teach him how to run.
When he got a part, he really
investigated the character
and investigated where he
was gonna go with it and the arc
that he was gonna take.
You're talking about a guy
who'd kill a grifter
over a chunk of money
wouldn't support him for two days.
He obviously used some of that
in approaching the racing.
At one point,
he said to me, "you know,
I'm acting out the role
of a racing driver."
That's the lovely part
about being an actor
is that you get to assume a lot
of different personalities.
And a lot of those personality
traits stick.
I look at that, and I say,
"gee, there's a little bit
of Hud in there
or fast Eddie Felson."
Acting is an enormously
disciplined thing
to do in terms of work,
of preparation,
and Paul is extreme
about preparation for any film,
whether he's acting or directing.
And I think all of that kind
of preparation
lends itself to the work
that you have to do as a racer,
that you can't just leap
into the car and start driving.
Paul and Joanne could walk
from our motor home,
two blocks to the false grid
with movie people
with a motorized bottom
taking 200 hundred pictures,
and I think
he was oblivious to that.
He had an ability to not let
those kinds of things upset him,
and I think the movie concentration
helped his racing concentration.
Really be able to know
that you can discard
all the extraneous stimuli
and depend on the one focus
that you want to focus on.
And when you really accomplish it,
I think you just
feel really good about it.
For about 24 years,
I had a place in Connecticut,
Westport, just about a mile
from where he was.
And it was then
that he was racing up Lime Rock.
He'd been with Sharp.
So he said, "why don't you
come up?"
So I went up there
and got on the track.
I whipped around about five
or six times.
But he jumps in and zips around
in about half the time that I did.
When I saw that, that's
when I first saw Paul race,
and I said: "Whoa, he's really good."
I think you pick up 300 rpm
from where I look at it.
He became so boring, because
that's all he'd talk about.
I'd go to talk to him.
I'd say, "so, how you doing?"
"Well, let me tell you
about the car..."
It started to drive me crazy.
The runoffs would be
all the factory teams
competing against each other.
Paul was driving Tullius' Triumph
Against Jim Fitzgerald
in the "D" production category
at the 1976 SCCA runoffs
at Road Atlanta.
Fitzy ended up breaking the car,
giving Paul his first
SCCA National Championship.
But I think Paul wanted
the thrill of beating a guy,
not winning a race artificially.
Paul would love to have been
a football quarterback.
Did Paul look 6'4,
200 pounds with muscles?
Was he really 5'9"-1/2
and 155 pounds?
And if you have some
of those ingredients
of spacial relations,
a burn in your belly
to want to win,
and the discipline to pull it off,
you've got an advantage
over the football player.
I always wanted to be a jock.
I skied and boxed
and played football badly.
I had no physical grace.
The only thing that I ever found
any grace in was an automobile.
He was always searching
to be better...
A better person,
a better actor, better driver.
That was just his nature.
That's where I think the ego
and the competitor came into him.
I can't be competitive
as an actor.
One guy is playing Uncle Willy.
The other guy is playing Hamlet.
So how do you say
which performance is best?
In a car, it's very simple.
It's down to a
thousandth of a second.
Anyone that's a racing winner
has an ego to want to be a winner,
and so did Paul.
Paul has a saying I'm sure
you've heard, where he says:
"Winning isn't everything.
It's just all there is."
I don't know
who the quote is from,
but it certainly applies to him.
Actors have the same stigma
that rich guys have.
You know, "here comes
so and so with his trailer,
and he's got his fancy leathers
and so and so.
Let's see how good he is."
so I think there was a tendency
to write him off as an actor
trying to do our job.
Oh, I don't care if they're
a movie star or a writer
or a movie producer.
You don't want to lose to somebody
that you feel
that you've devoted more energy
into it than they did.
The guys want to beat
a Paul Newman twice as bad
as they want to beat
Joe Luce Scooch.
So I think, you know, you got
a big bull's-eye on your back.
"Oh, I want to get that guy."
If you race with somebody
like Paul Newman,
you want to beat them,
because you figure
they've been lucky enough.
His presence at a track
would guarantee a large crowd.
If you could see
the number of people
that turned up from the press,
from New York,
from the big papers, and so forth.
He tried to have his privacy.
He'd have a motor home
and go in the back
before the race to cool down.
Paul loved his privacy.
We held the spectators off enough
that they still got to see Paul
And they got a press kit
or something like that,
maybe, without abusing Paul.
And I would get him,
like, Friday afternoon at 3:00
for 15 minutes.
And then I would go to the media
and say, "if you ask him
racing questions...
He loves to talk racing.
We're racers.
He'll talk racing
for the next hour.
If you want to know
'what's Joanne's next movie?',
he's gonna have to go talk to
the crew chief pretty quickly.
He was really the real Paul Newman
when he was around people
that he really cared for
and he was relaxed.
Except for your race, the only
good thing was the bratwurst.
I think that Paul
was approachable,
but he was very discerning
on where he gave his time
and what he did,
Because he was concentrating
on something else.
I mean, driving.
Does he want to have
somebody come up
and stick a piece of
paper in his face
and say, "sign the autograph"?
No. That would get him
a little hot.
It got me a little hot, too.
He was so adored, I think,
all over the planet
that he just like to be
like a regular guy.
He was in popular movies
but was also kind of an outsider.
He stayed in the trailer.
He didn't want to stay in the,
you know, the plaza,
and a limo didn't
take him to his car.
You know, he was just a guy.
Well, I think
he liked the camaraderie,
and I think the fellowship
of that relationship
with the fellow drivers...
there's nothing like it.
It's not anything you can have
in Hollywood at all.
He loved joking around,
he loved companionship,
and you can see that,
but he probably shifted
from the film world
into the racing world.
You can see that he adopted
a lot of friendships.
Fitzy, of course, was like
almost a mascot for our team.
Just the most personable guy.
- Hi, Sam. How are ya?
- So, congratulations.
How was it?
He was a very, very good driver.
He was a gentleman PR guy
for auto racing,
and he was the chief instructor
at Road Atlanta, a great guy.
Everyone loved him.
"Teddy bear" Jim Fitzgerald.
He befriended Joanne.
They were both a
little bit southern.
They got along very, very well,
and he befriended Paul.
He even likes to let
everybody think he's 60.
He's really 50.
And everybody thinks I'm 50,
and I'm really... 40.
No, I'm not.
It's nice to have a teammate
who, at the beginning of the year,
was given a certificate
to Forest Lawn
the same way that I was.
That was on behalf
of the younger drivers.
They've also offered
to buy us teeth
when we needed them
and Polident...
A year supply of Polident...
And that special stuff
that you glue your hair on with.
But, by the same token,
a lot of those kids
have got diaper rash.
Fitzgerald loved him as a buddy.
I think they were good friends.
Paul tried to get Jim a little,
tiny spot in a movie one time,
and Paul had ended up putting
the words across his chest so
Jim would get them right on
about the 12th take, you know?
We don't have to race.
It's fun being with him
just as a friend
or visiting or palling around,
but to race in addition,
I couldn't ask for anything nicer.
It's terrific on two counts.
I count him as a friend,
for one thing,
and we drive very much the same
and we don't have to apologize
to those young kids out there... yet.
Deceit and treachery
will always triumph over youth
and good intentions anyways.
There is no sport
more exciting than racing.
This is the next best
thing to heaven.
They had never seen it before.
A black driver this fast,
this competitive?
They weren't ready for that.
It wasn't easy.
It was real tough to find support.
You could feel, in a lot
of respects, the animosity.
I was on a mission
to head up that ladder
to the top of the sport,
which, for me, was Indycar.
To the outside retaining wall
as he heads down the 1,730-foot...
I first met Paul in the pits,
and it was brief,
but he was paying attention.
And he said, "keep
up the good work."
I wasn't a paid driver
to that point.
I was getting paid a percentage
of the prize money,
but I wasn't receiving
a monthly check.
It was hard.
I didn't have the money
to buy my own racer
or own my own team,
so I would do about five
or six races a year
Until I got the call...
Until I got the big call.
It was the day before thanksgiving
that I got the car from P.L.
Said, "hey, kid,
I think I've got a deal for you
if you want it.
Trans-Am team is going
to call you tomorrow.
I recommended you.
If there's any problems,
call me."
And it changed everything.
When Paul got me that deal,
I was a paid race driver.
Not only did he get me a job,
he got me in one
of the best teams...
If not the best team...
In the championship,
competing against him.
In my first year,
I won 5 out of 11 races,
and I was rookie of the year.
And then in '85,
I won damn near all of them.
Emerson Fittipaldi...
A.J. Foyt, Willy T. Ribbs
staring into history.
For me and my career,
Newman was, without question,
one of the most important
people of them all.
Ribbs made history,
becoming the first black driver
to tour the circuit.
If it wasn't for him,
I would've never
been a professional.
I would've never been in
Indycar and in the Indy 500.
It was...
He was very private man.
So the last thing
you would ever think
that he's a practical joker.
What are your plans for next year?
Well, I'm doing some
porno flicks out in new Mexico.
You know, I need a nurse.
A nurse?
Hey, Sal, come on in here.
You need to be a nurse.
He called me one day, and he said,
"this is David Stern
from the National Enquirer.
We've been informed
that you been bunging iguanas
on a Denver street corner."
I said, "well, iguanas
don't get that far north.
They end in Arizona.
They're not getting up into Colorado.
It's too cold."
And he started laughing.
He said, "you busted me, kid."
I had this hat that I really liked.
Paul didn't think
it was worthy of me, I guess.
You know, we had some shotguns,
and somebody grabbed the hat
and threw it up in the air.
Paul went bam, bam, bam.
And, of course, my hat was riddled
with little, tiny holes all over.
I got a picture from him,
and I'm to the side of him,
looking like he said
something shocking.
He signed it, "actually,
the truth is, I'm Willy's dad!"
We had this relationship where
we'd play jokes on each other.
And so, I'm thinking,
"I've heard enough about cars."
You know, the guy can't stop.
So I went to a towing service.
I said, "can you
find me a crushed car?"
And they just happened to
find a crushed Porsche.
And I said, "okay, would you
wrap it in wrapping paper
and put a ribbon around it
and deliver it to Paul
Newman's back porch?"
They did, and I called them.
I said, "you do that?"
and he said, "yeah, I did."
I said, "anybody there?"
"No. No."
So I didn't hear anything.
A couple of weeks goes by
and I go to my house,
which was rented.
I go in there, and in the foyer
is this big box.
And the box is obviously heavy,
because it's put a dent
in the floor of the house
that I'm renting,
which means I'm gonna
have to pay for it.
Took me about an hour
to crowbar the box apart,
and there was this big block
of metal...
Big square block of metal.
I said, "okay, I got it."
So then I called a friend
of mine who was a sculptor
and a lady and I said, "look,
if I deliver you some materials,
Could you sculpt something
for a garden?"
She goes, "oh, that'd be great."
I knew she wasn't
a particularly good sculptor,
so that was part of the deal.
And three weeks later, she
called to say it was finished.
Called the towing service back.
"Pick this up and take it
and put it in Newman's garden."
So they did.
And to this day, Paul and I
never spoke a word about it.
I guess that sums up
our relationship in a way.
He liked to build
what the English call Q-cars,
which are cars that look normal
but have incredible abilities.
Occasionally, I would meet a guy
that would say,
"I was in Connecticut,
and this Volkswagen pulls up,
and it's Paul Newman
And he just blew my doors off."
He would drive
a disguised Volvo station wagon
with about a 650-horsepower
engine in it.
He just wanted to be,
you know, totally incognito,
if you will.
But if you recognized him,
it was a time for him to just,
you know, open somebody's eyes.
You know, he would do that.
He was just that kind of guy.
We loved Paul for Paul,
not because he was an actor.
He was a wonderful human being,
a great guy to be associated with.
The kind of a guy... "hey,
let's have a beer."
And I think he liked the
Westport countryfied atmosphere
versus the Hollywood atmosphere.
I had taken Paul and his
son around Lime Rock
When I first met them.
He was a California guy,
and he passed on of an overdose.
The tragedy of his death,
it was something that was
never really talked about.
I think what Paul did with that
was he made it his business.
I said to Paul, "Paul, would you
like to take some time off?
I know this is a difficult time."
He said, "Sharp, practice me
five days a week if you can.
I can't change it,
I feel badly that it happened,
But the less I think about it,
the more I motor on.
And racing's a wonderful thing,
'cause it consumes you."
When you get out to that track
and you sit down in that car,
whatever it is that's
roiling around in your head,
It just goes right out the window.
And then the tiger
in the tank came out.
Newman's begun to accelerate,
and the green flag
hasn't even been dropped.
Newman's timed it perfectly.
I used to be able to be psyched.
You know,
you can't psych me anymore.
I'll see a guy in my mirror.
You know, two years ago,
I'd say, "oh, god,
he's gonna catch me."
And now I say, "well, I'm gonna
show him where it's all at."
We won 15 out of 17 races
that year.
He is headed through turn number 12,
and Paul Newman is going to be
The "C" production 1979
national champion.
The margin of victory...
6.3 seconds
between first and second.
Last year, you were second,
and you said then
maybe you could be first with
a little help from the driver.
How do you feel
about the driver right now?
Well, I don't know.
That car worked so...
You know, usually, it's a sign
of modesty... baloney.
Shirley Temple could've
gotten in that thing
and gone like a rocket.
I think although the two of us
are surely not two peas in a pod,
I think we complement each other
very much.
I thought
it was a winning combination,
and I did have confidence
that he would be a
winner in our cars.
How do you feel as a driver?
Are you proud
of what you've just done.
Yeah, it felt pretty good.
I mean, the last time I inherited,
you know, the championship,
and this time
I won it fair-and-square.
There goes Paul Newman
out for another run.
I met Paul in 1977
when we were teammates
on a Ferrari team running
the "24 hours of Daytona."
We really got along very well
from the very beginning.
Paul was a very competitive driver.
He did not want
to take a backseat to anybody.
In 1978, my team went
to the "24 hours of Le Mans,"
where we were fortunate
enough to win there.
Right after that race,
Paul called me and said,
"Dick, I'd really like to take
a shot at winning Le Mans."
In the world of racing,
Le Mans is the epitome.
It's every race driver's dream
to race there and to win there.
They even made a movie about it.
The world's best drivers
competed there...
Formula one drivers,
sports-car drivers,
Indianapolis drivers.
I raced at Le Mans nine times
and won in my class twice
and won third overall.
It's certainly an event
that garners attention
from all over the world.
You get 300,000
to 400,000 people every year.
The infield is packed
with campers from every country.
The ambiance
is absolutely incredible.
It's exciting.
It's a 24-hour race that starts
at 4:00 in the afternoon,
and it ends at 4:00 the next day.
Three, two, one.
Whoever does the most miles
in that period of time
wins the race.
The word got out that Paul was
one of the drivers on the team,
and that went around the world
and all the world press.
By the time
that the first practice session
came at Le Mans,
the crowds had just doubled.
I had never seen
that many people there,
and it was mayhem, really,
a chaos,
especially at the racetrack.
The crowds were anxious
to get in and see him.
We were staying
at this delightful castle
called Malicorne in Le Mans.
After the first night,
we had a problem,
because the paparazzi
were actually climbing up
and scaling the wall to get to
Paul's room.
I felt the private
person that he was
was not a natural mix to go
to the "24 hours at Le Mans."
He was there to race the car,
not to do autographs
or not to pose for pictures
and this and that.
They're a completely
ungoverned bunch.
They're desperate.
They're rabid.
They don't care what the rules
are, what dignity means,
what privacy means.
They're a pain in the ass.
There's no question.
And I don't think Paul
liked it anymore than I did.
He developed, over time,
ways to deal with it,
but you can only control so much.
In 1979, I drove a 935 Porsche.
It was identical to the car
that Paul Newman drove.
We raced a Porsche 935 six-cylinder,
twin-turbocharged Boxer engine.
We ran in qualifying
over 800 horsepower.
In the race, probably
650 to 700 horsepower.
Top speed was over 220 miles
an hour.
It was violent.
It was fantastic.
It was three drivers,
one hour each.
Rolf started the race for us,
I was the next driver,
and then the third driver was Paul.
Paul and Rolf got along great.
Paul really respected the fact
that Rolf was a formula one driver,
a Porsche-factory driver.
Le Mans is a very unique track.
It is roughly eight miles long.
It's part permanent racetrack
and part public highway.
Once a year, the Mulsanne
freeway is closed off,
and it becomes the
Mulsanne straightaway.
For the first few laps,
I think, "this is pretty stupid,"
going down a two-lane highway
at over 200 miles an hour
with guardrails and trees
on the side of the road.
My 512s Ferrari in 1970
went 248 miles an hour.
And you always have respect for it,
because it's a very
dangerous place to race.
You were racing at Le Mans
this year,
and a driver in your class died.
It was three minutes
into the race.
It was a lot of weather there.
- Oh, no.
- An Aston, and it's a big one.
It's hard, because it's
like part of your family.
You don't really think
it's gonna happen anymore.
And then you got to get back out
and do it.
And every time you went
by that spot in the track,
you had to be focused
on moving forward
and not think about what had
Speed at Le Mans
varies based on the conditions.
In the 1979 race, it was clear
and then it was absolutely a
cloud burst of incredible rain,
incredible fog in the nighttime,
which made it very, very dangerous.
The attrition during the race
was quite high.
A lot of cars ending up
in the guardrails,
spinning off,
not being able to finish.
55 cars started the race
and only 22 finish.
An absolutely tough course.
In rain? At night?
When I saw that, I said: "Wow.
He's real going somewhere."
Our stints were one hour.
You would come in after an hour,
take on a full load of fuel,
change all four tires,
and change drivers.
Hopefully in less than a minute,
because every second
you lost in the pits
was very hard
to make up on the track.
The paparazzi
were really merciless,
especially in our pits,
and they were all over our car.
And we needed to get out
on the racetrack,
and Paul didn't want
to run them over.
You have to block
out everybody, 'cause if you
start to really concentrate...
certainly at Le Mans.
There's so many cameras
If you are aware of that,
you couldn't get in the car
and function.
We had told Paul,
when he gets in the car,
he's belted in,
and he's ready to go,
just turn the ignition on,
fire it up,
and leave no matter how many people
were in front of the car.
And he did, and he bowed
over three paparazzi.
At about the 22nd hour,
we found ourselves
in the lead overall,
and then, on the 23rd hour,
we made a pit stop
with about an hour to go,
and one of the left-front
tires, the nut
had welded itself on because
of the rain and the heat.
So we had to have a long pit stop,
chisel off the front suspension,
and replace it and get
back in the race.
Some interviewer
literally came over
and grabbed Paul,
trying to get an interview
right when we were in the
midst of doing our job.
We look at the camera,
monsieur, pardon. Merci.
The camera is right in front
of you.
I just want to know
exactly your impressions
of Le Mans now.
After 22 hours, you are in
second position in the race.
The idea that racing,
which requires
extreme concentration and focus,
to have somebody
interfere with that, to me,
that's criminal.
Rolf took off, really
bent on regaining the lead.
Unfortunately, we kind
of pushed the car too hard.
We lost a cylinder.
And so Rolf had to baby the car
that last hour,
and we ended up second overall
but first in the IMSA class.
At the end of the race,
the crowd absolutely
emptied the grandstands
and came onto the track.
The crew had to form a
barricade around the car,
and it was pushed up
to victory circle.
It was very exciting,
very magical.
Paul, many times after that.
He said it was the most
rewarding race of his life.
I was just little Dickie Barbour
from La Mesa, California,
and all of a sudden, you know,
we're in this limelight.
Anybody would be pretty struck
by having this happen to them.
I think we were kind
of standing back,
watching all this happening,
and it was certainly a
matter of pride for us,
you know, because he
did choose to race with us.
After Newman was in the car
that finished second overall
at Le Mans, his stock
went up with a lot of people.
Other drivers
from around the world
really developed
incredible respect for Paul
and that he was one of them,
they all knew how difficult
winning at Le Mans was,
and most of them had never won.
It legitimized all of us,
the victory there.
I believe that Paul
didn't go back for the reason
that the paparazzi just
made it so difficult
for him to concentrate.
It kind of took the pleasure
out of it for him.
The victory lap
and the taste of triumph
certainly aren't new to Newman
and to his race crew,
but the big payoff is the
national championship trophy.
It's not an Oscar,
but to Paul Newman,
it's the honor he seeks most
in his second career.
Will he retire when he gets it?
"Hey," he says, "I'll retire
when I get slower, not older."
He really felt at home here.
People in racing,
they knew who he was,
and they were impressed by him,
but they didn't bug him.
When P.L. was at the racetrack,
he was another race driver,
in his mind.
He wasn't P.L. Newman
the movie star.
He was P.L. Newman
the race driver.
And he conducted himself
like that,
and he never put himself
on a pedestal ever.
He was just another driver
that you wanted to beat.
You know, he got that
much credibility.
People didn't even think
of him being a movie-star racer.
He was just a racer.
There was a little boy,
standing with his mother,
and Paul walked by, and I heard this.
The mother grabbed the little boy
and said:
"Do you know who that is?"
And the little boy said:
"Yeah, it's Paul Newman."
And she said: "Yes,
but do you know who he is?"
And he said:
"Yes, it's a racer."
And I thought,
"isn't that wonderful?"
Because that's what would
make Paul very happy.
He drove in the
"24 hours of Daytona,"
and then won worldwide
recognition by finishing second
in the famous 24-hour
race at Le Mans.
This last year,
Paul's fascination with racing
has been such that he's
competed in more events.
In fact, some people
think he's spending more time
with his racing career
now than with his movie career.
Every year, I keep saying
that I'm gonna, you know,
stop all this.
So now it looks like I got
a couple of really good scripts
that will go during the
spring and the summer.
So all I have to do is burn
all those scripts, you see,
so I can get back in the car again.
He wasn't so much
divided between the two.
It was that film
would come second to racing.
What is the mystique
about beating the other guy,
about winning?
Well, whatever it is,
it's a mystique
that's held in high reverence
by people in racing.
And I was driving the pro cars,
and Paul was driving
the amateur circuit.
But then he got so good
that it made sense
for him to join me in the pro races.
The car in the background
here was a big IMSA contender.
We had over 900 horsepower.
I had to make a choice
when I went from amateurs
to professional racing,
whether I wanted to be
a big fish in a little pond
or a little fish in a big pond.
Going from 300-some-odd
horsepower to 900 horsepower
is that quantum leap
that you keep talking about.
I think I was away 24 weekends
this summer.
If I wasn't racing,
the Can-Am team was racing
or I was running out to Ohio
to visit Joanne who was
doing a play out there,
and I felt as though I was
inside of a meat grinder,
but all I got to do
if I don't want to do it is stop.
I was worried about him.
I really was seriously concerned.
His whole career
looked as though it was gonna
because all he wanted
to do was race.
They'll have to strap me down
before they keep me
out of these things.
Welcome back, Joanne.
We understand you taught
him everything he knows.
Of course. Absolutely.
And that's why he drives so well.
Joanne has really,
through all of this, you know,
when I was racing badly,
she was supportive.
When I was racing well,
she was supportive.
She keeps asking
the eternal question,
"well, next season, what?
Do we go to France and Paris,
or is it Somers Point
and Pocono."
And she's been just
patient beyond all belief.
Anything can happen
when you're in a race car,
and I think that that was a thing
that she was very concerned about,
about with him becoming,
in some way,
injured with the family
and all of that and also
starting late in life.
Racing was more dangerous
then than it is now,
and it was always a risk
to have him at the wheel.
He was very aggressive, you know.
You can drive hard and you
can even drive extra hard,
and you're not gonna
win any races.
The only way that you're
ever gonna win a race
is just to be right on the
edge of it all the time.
He was not afraid to test the limits.
And sometimes, you got
to get off and go off the track
or brush that wall
to find out where the limit is.
Oh, Newman and Bowman
have gone off.
And he's had a lot of spins,
and there have been
a couple of times
When he didn't come around.
You know, when I'm sitting,
waiting, and saying,
Like, "what happened?
Where did he go?"
Newman was on Viagra
before they even made Viagra.
He was a hard-dick brother.
I didn't want to see him do it,
because it was dangerous,
and I didn't want
to see anything happen to him.
I think everybody wanted
him to quit racing except him.
He was under no pressure to win.
He was under no pressure to go fast.
He didn't have to.
That's not how he made a living.
He was challenging himself as a man.
What's your strategy going to be?
Just drive the race
and try to stay alive.
A racing driver
is very aware of the fact
that death can happen at any time
just because you're going
so fast and there's
so many things out of your control...
The weather, other cars,
mechanical failures, tire failures.
But you're so passionate
about being a race driver
that that overcomes all those senses.
The biggest vintage-car race
in the country
is the Monterey Historics.
In 2010, one of the cars
I drove was the 1958 Scarab.
The race started,
we went over the hill,
and just before the Andretti hairpin,
one car misjudged
the speed of the car
that he was catching at the
back of the pack and spun.
The car right behind him lost
control trying to avoid him,
hit the guardrail on the inside,
and bounced across the track
as I passed and ran
into me in the back...
my left rear corner...
and started flipping the car.
After the crash, the car
was loaded on a flatbed...
Well, the remains of it.
And, in essence, it was destroyed.
But you can fix anything,
especially when it's worth $6 million.
And I thought my neck was broken,
but I raced again in a month.
You know what this reminds me of?
The theater.
It has its audience, its cast,
its drama, comedy,
and sometimes it's tragedy, too.
Things happen in a microsecond,
and sometimes it's not
in your control
like it wasn't in Rolf's control.
In the LA Times grand prix
in 1983,
going into turn 9 at well
over 200 miles an hour,
his rear wing broke.
Paul understood the danger
of racing firsthand after Rolf died.
Paul loved making salad dressing,
and at Christmas time,
he and A.E. Hotchner,
the author,
would make up salad dressing.
They'd put it in an old wine split,
and they'd give it to
the neighbors and the relatives.
And on a Saturday night cookout,
often we'd barbecue out
at the track where the guys
are working on the car.
Paul would go get all the ingredients
to make his salad dressing.
So we'd have salad and
hamburger and fruit,
and he would say, you know,
"I really want to go into
salad-dressing business."
Sam Posey's wife designed the label,
and Paul Newman was
in the salad-dressing business.
He and my wife,
Ellen, started hanging out.
He said, you know,
"I'd like the label to be not one
of the traditional salad dressings.
Would you be interested
in doing the label for me?"
So she said sure,
and she came and mocked one up
Right within a day right there.
And he loved that,
and that's the way it went.
Her name is actually
in among the leaves.
And so, we figure she's the
most reproduced fine artist
in the history of the world.
The second that someone
said, "the only way
you're gonna make this work"
is to put your face
on the label, that's the second
the money went to charity.
I think that you have a choice
about what you're gonna
do your life with success.
Some people want to further
it or you want to stop
and say, "look,
I don't need that much."
I would get more satisfaction
if I can create some
kind of a mechanism
to give other people an
opportunity they may not have.
Paul chose the camp for sick kids.
We have five in the United States.
We have one in Ireland,
one in France,
one in the south of England.
I think this year,
we had 13,000 kids in camp...
All of it free.
Paul was precise.
So was Jim.
I mean, these are two very
professional road racers,
and both wanted to beat
each other with a passion.
There were times
when Fitzy would dive-bomb Paul.
There was also times
where "honor the senior friend
who helps all of this happen."
So it wasn't an, "after you,
Alphonse," kind of a deal.
Yet I think Paul would put
together more consistent laps
to have a little bit
of an edge on Fitzy.
The battle shaping up... Paul
and Fitzy battling for the lead.
He's got Fitzgerald
right on his tail.
And, sure,
Paul knows and likes Fitzy.
Theirs is one
of the oldest friendships
in the sport.
Last lap... the pace
has not slackened.
Jim Fitzgerald has pushed
hard the whole way,
but Newman hasn't faltered,
nor has his car.
It looks like he's going
to win this one the way
he won his last national
championship back in '79...
I mean, I never heard him lord
over people, "I won this race."
He would say,
"I was very lucky."
You know, "when we were doing this,
I was fortunate enough
to have this crew..."
Whatever it might be.
I wouldn't see him today
tweeting out victories
or sending Facebook pictures.
You know, it just makes me laugh.
It's that sort of
stoic, American way.
I like the kind of racing
where there's no spectators.
That seems like
a rather sour thing to say,
but that's when I have the most fun.
Just flip it up,
and it'll take a little less
drain off before you start it.
Paul had a desire
to go out to tracks
and run cars during periods
when he was making films.
When Paul did "The Color
of Money" with Tom...
Pretty damn good.
Not bad for a blind man.
After days of filming,
he would go find
some little 1/8-of-a-mile dirt
track or something
and take a few laps
to blow off the steam.
He had so much fun, he said,
"hey, Tom, why don't you come on
out with me and have some fun
running around this
little racetrack?"
Well, Tom had a ball.
So Paul called me up,
and he said, "do you think
Nissan would make a showroom
stock car available for Tom?"
The demographic for Tom for all
of our sponsors was terrific.
So, absolutely,
Nissan was interested.
He's been up in F-15s
so he knows what that...
You know, what the big
roller coaster is like.
I think he was probably
more excited by the driving
than he was by the flying.
Of course, that car
had a sudden death
at Watkins Glen
at about 80 miles an hour
into the guardrail.
Tom wanted to win immediately,
and I did everything I could.
I had a lot of fun with Tom,
but I tried to get
him to have the patience,
and many times, you know,
he was racing against
people who had
ten years' experience on him.
Well, Tom won a couple
of races during the year,
so he had the potential
of doing very well.
But he'd tried to cover up
a mistake immediately,
which often got him
into a bigger mistake.
He's off the track.
He's trying to correct.
It's 90% mental, 10% physical.
The discipline, you know,
plays such a key part.
That's the most challenging,
I really haven't had the amount
of time
that I need to really form
a relationship with the car
and understand what it's gonna
do under extreme conditions.
Paul pulled him aside.
We sent him to Fitzy
a half a dozen times
down to Road Atlanta,
'cause here's the chief
instructor uncle Fitzy,
And Fitzy loved Tom.
They got along very, very well.
And we put together his showroom
stock two different classes,
which led to Tom doing the film,
"Days of Thunder."
The second year, at Pocono,
Tom got into a problem
on the bow
and instead of spinning the car,
he corrected,
and it went into the guardrail
at about 130 miles an hour.
I think that was maybe the time
when Mimi and Tom had a discussion
that maybe the two years
of racing was enough.
In a way, we were sorry
to see Tom not stay with racing,
but we have also were happy
to see him retire unhurt.
There was no doubt who the star
of the 1986 Valvoline road
racing classic was.
It's Newman's fourth
national championship.
I guess he's on a bit of a roll.
Newman, who's known
as a serious racer driver,
won the Road Atlanta GT1
national championship.
So, I'm getting a little long
in the tooth.
It's nice.
The young princes are coming up.
And it's time to let somebody
else sit on the chair up here.
Paul Newman, the winner.
The popcorn's a winner.
Maybe he'll get an Oscar this year.
The pressure
to win grew as he did win,
and people expected him to win again,
and he had to force the
issue quite a few times.
When I went to the Road Atlanta
for the runoffs my first year
is when I first met Paul Newman.
He was clean most of the time,
but it just seemed
that there were times
when he didn't qualify
well that he didn't deal
with that very well, and he knew
he had a very fast car.
So there were times when he would sort
of give it a real charge
at the start
and try to maybe "pass more cars
before turn 1" kind of a thing.
That's usually
where the problems happened.
And here comes a thundering
herd with Newman in front.
- Newman on the inside.
- Oh!
Newman and Herb here tangle
and try out a tire barrier.
And there as Herb tried to turn
into the corner, there was Newman.
But I'm not convinced either
one would've made the turn.
I guess our paths really
crossed in an official capacity
when we were both racing
professionally in the '80s
in the Trans-Am series.
And to literally say
our paths crossed,
it was when we kind of
crashed into each other.
But he remembered it,
because when he gave me
a ride on his scooter
on the way to our cars
on the pit lane. Almost 15, 20
years later, I asked him
to autograph that photograph.
And when he did, he wrote,
"rear-ended again."
So I'm like,
I think he remembered...
- Yeah.
- Those times,
you know, in the past.
- I don't know.
- Are we ready?
Racing against him,
he wouldn't give you any room.
You had to work for it.
But he knew the reality
in that sport.
You can, at the minimum,
get hurt real bad...
At the minimum.
We ran Jim basically
in the southeast,
and we ran in the northeast.
Now, at a few races...
Mid-Ohio maybe,
Elkhart Lake, Wisconsin,
Road Atlanta...
we'd all come together.
We were racing two Trans-Am cars
at St. Petersburg.
Paul was ahead of Fitzy.
Elliot Forbes-Robinson
of the No 11 Porsche,
and Paul Newman
who moved up from sixth to fifth
at the start.
And Fitzy came
down the straightaway
and never braked for turn 1.
There you see Jim Fitzgerald
in the No 38 Nissan.
It looks like he clipped
the wall on the outside there,
as you can see it on the left,
and spun violently into that wall.
That's a very dangerous part
of this track, actually.
He hit the Jersey barrier
and careened backwards
and went into the second one
from whatever speed
to zero in two feet.
You can see Jim Fitzgerald
still inside the car
and not moving.
He broke his neck
when he hit the second barrier,
so he was probably dead instantly.
How did Paul do in that race?
He ran a couple laps and pulled in.
- He couldn't continue?
- No, he couldn't continue.
Now, you know, we have
some go-karts over there.
NBC has these long studios,
and they're all empty.
So the hallway
goes for 1/4 mile that way,
go right, 1/4 mile back.
I said, "let's get
some go-karts, and we'll race."
There's your car right there.
So I'm practicing all day,
and I'm, "this will be easy."
You know, Newman comes in,
looks at it, and he just gets that...
When you see that racer glance,
which I obviously do not have.
Paul, do you have any advice
or otherwise for your man here?
Pray for your life.
He gets in the car and... Zing!
I mean, just a master driver.
He just had that innate ability,
which is frustrating
for people like me,
who love this but realize
I don't have the skill.
I don't have the ability,
but he really did.
I mean, he beat me so
horrendously bad...
Killed me, just killed me.
Paul Newman manages to win.
This Bud's for the
Paul Newman Can-Am racing team.
The Can-Am series
was pretty much ending,
and he had a team,
so I suggested that maybe he
would partner with Carl Haas.
I raced against Paul Newman.
I had a race team at that time
in the Can-Am series,
and Paul had a team.
We weren't particularly friends.
If we were in politics,
We'd probably be
Castor and Rumsfeld.
Carl was the importer of the Lola cars.
Paul was the customer.
The cars were always
delivered late and over weight.
Paul was accusing Carl
of selling him heavy cars,
and, you know, not giving him
any sort of an advantage
because Carl was
competing against him.
For 1982, I wanted to get
my ending program together.
And what you really
need if you want to be
successful in this thing
is you need a good driver.
You need a top driver
and then the rest of will
come to you easier.
I was used a little bit
to bring the team together.
Carl was pretty smart about it.
What he did is he hired me
to drive his Formula 4,
and in doing so,
he had my dad now at the races,
so in the background,
he got closer to my father.
He was world champion on Formula 1.
He won races in NASCAR racing,
he won races in dirt tracks,
he won races in Indy cars,
he won the Indy 500.
He was the best in the world.
I wanted to be part
of a different team
after the '82 season.
I said, "Carl, what about,"
I said, "a partnership with,
like, Paul Newman?"
"Oh, yeah, yeah.
I mean, Carl, you know,
jumped on that immediately.
I won a Can-Am series dive,
Carl called and said,
"how would you like to start
an open-wheel racing team?"
I said, "not a chance in hell, Carl."
He said, "what if Mario was driving?"
I said, "where would
you like to meet?"
It wasn't just that he
was a fierce competitor,
there was a real joy and delight.
The way he got in
that car, I mean,
he just snuggled up to it
like a really good-looking lady,
and he enjoyed everything about it.
When we first started off,
he had a Lola car built for us
and we took the car out racing
to begin with, those first few
races in Indianapolis,
and the car was really bad.
Mario had a crash at Indy.
- He's just...
- oh!
That's the yellow car,
Johnny Parsons, Mario Andretti.
- Oh, no, Mario.
- Andretti he hit the wall.
So we had a bad time.
Carl was all business.
The guy that would do
anything necessary
to get the basic ingredients,
the best pit boss,
the best engineer, you know,
The best driver,
the best everything
as far as running the team.
The flying Frenchman
has done it again.
You can't even describe Carl Haas.
He was that guy who had been
in the racing business forever,
who was very mystic, you know,
was blessing the cars
Before the race,
and Paul being so candid
about, you know, racing
and just, you know, enjoying it.
Paul was the guy
that would just keep everything
under control, if you will.
If I had a misunderstanding
with Carl,
Paul would always be the one to
come in and smooth things out.
19-year-old Graham Rahal
in his first Indy-car
series start will win,
the Honda grand prix
at St. Pete.
He was always that type
of owner that wasn't really
a boss, just more of a friend,
and I just loved being around him.
He was really good to drive for,
'cause he understood the pressures
that the drivers were under.
He would let his guys
do what they do best.
With a very consistent
engineering office,
mechanics mostly stayed the same
for the five years I was there.
So it was just a very
well-sorted team.
Those four years
that we were together before I
left for Formula 1 were probably
my favorite times of racing.
I really felt like it was
a family team from Paul and Carl
to, I mean, obviously,
dad and myself.
I mean, it was just a
perfect situation.
5,000 people here for Andretti.
His first victory at Long Beach.
There's even hugging
and kissing going on.
During the first couple years or so,
Paul and I weren't real close,
but I think we came closer
as time went by.
I had the longest stint
in my career for a single team
by driving for Paul Newman
and Carl Haas.
You couldn't find
any more opposite people
to work together and form one
of the best race teams
in America ever.
Michael Andretti, as he
receives the congratulations
of his pit crew.
This day is all about
Cristiano de Matta,
who has clinched the championship.
And there is the checkered flag
for Nigel Mansell.
Here comes Paul Newman now.
I think you get the idea of
how much it means to this team.
This man in 2004 and again
in 2005 is the series champion.
The Frenchman Sebastien Bourdais
is going to do something
nobody's done before...
four straight champ car titles.
Will we ever see Paul Newman
or another racing film
like "Winning"
maybe again some day?
I've been looking for a script,
a good script, for 12 years,
and I have not been
able to find one.
I was determined, even though
it was an animated film
with cars as the characters.
But I wanted it to be authentic.
I wanted the racing to be authentic.
I wanted the pit
stops to be authentic.
As they talk about the racing,
I wanted it to be authentic.
I've always been
a big Paul Newman fan,
But also, I was very aware
that he was really
quite a talented race car driver.
And we started thinking,
"I wonder if Paul Newman
would be willing to do
a voice in our film."
If I want him out of my court room,
I want him out of our town.
I mean, this is like
shooting for the moon.
I mean, Paul Newman,
the greatest American actor.
You know, I'm always like,
"well, let's give it a try.
I mean, the worst
is he'll say 'no.'"
And soon after that,
we got the word that, yes,
he would love to do this.
He's really smart,
and what he loved about it
was the history.
And we started talking
about the Hudson 1,
And he started giving me
his knowledge and memory of it,
and how it influenced
modern cars and so on.
One of the great things
about Paul Newman
is his knowledge of racing.
And his knowledge of racing
helped make the character
of Doc Hudson in "Cars"
a much deeper
and much more complex character.
- Look at those trophies!
- You look,
all I see is a bunch
of empty cups.
There's just a quality when he
gets into the joy of racing.
There's words he uses,
phrases he uses.
And if you watch Doc Hudson
in "Cars," it's Paul.
All right, you can drive
as good as you can fix a road.
He's getting excited
with Lightning McQueen
On the track in the final race,
and he just goes, "hot snot!
We're back in business!"
hot snot!
We are back in business.
That was so funny,
and it was pure him.
We had the scene
where he is teaching
Lighting McQueen to drive on dirt,
and as I talked to these
guys who drive on dirt,
there's a term they use,
which we loved,
is that you turn right to go left.
If you're going hard enough left,
You'll find
yourself turning right.
He says, "no, you don't just
turn right to go left.
If you just turn the wheel,
you're gonna go that direction.
You got to break it loose,
and then you start steering
into the turn."
And he really was defining it,
and if you watch the movie,
That's exactly
what Doc Hudson says.
You got to pitch it hard,
break it loose,
and just drive it with the throttle.
And it's great,
'cause Autoweek Magazine
called it the best car movie ever
because of all the details
and how we got it right.
And that is in great part
to Paul Newman, and,
You know, what he gave to us.
And he knew we were striving
to be authentic.
And he was there for us
and shared his
enthusiasm for racing,
his passion for racing,
his knowledge of racing.
And he wanted that in the
movie, and it's there.
You got a lot of stuff, kid.
We got this for Paul Newman.
We wish him very good luck
and many more races.
It's gonna be very hard to quit,
but, at some point,
you lose your endurance.
Boy, in the middle of July,
and it's 130,
140 degrees in that car...
I'll tell you, it takes it
out of you pretty quickly.
He semi-retired, and he bought
one of our Nissan turbo cars.
He was, at that point,
ready to do Tuesdays
at Lime Rock for fun.
Well, he had so much fun
doing that
that he decided
to race it seriously.
I said, "well, Paul,
if you want to race a lot,
why don't you
buy a ex-Trans-Am car?"
It's a Trans-Am tried car,
two-year frame,
a lot of horsepower...
We get around the course
in under a minute.
To know that you've done a lap
where you put everything
together a couple, three,
four times in a row,
that's exciting.
And especially when
you get to be my age,
it's just a privilege
to be able to sit in that car.
His last couple of races were here,
and one of them was in the rain.
And he was just brilliant.
I mean, he was 82.
The car number was his age.
Paul ran against a whole bunch
of Trans-Am quality drivers
and beat them.
That was the last car he raced.
So, Paul ran up until he was 83.
I think the fact that he
made something of himself
when the odds
seemed to be against it
is an outstanding feat.
He was very specific
on what he wanted to do in life,
and this was a big part of it.
He excelled at acting,
very good at racing,
and an all-around decent guy.
I mean, it's that classic
red-blooded American boy
who tried hard and didn't,
you know, always try to have
the spotlight on himself.
But then when he won,
it was "oh, he won this on his own."
He just had
this magnificent quality,
you know, as a human being.
As a human being,
he was a terrific, terrific man.
Paul's legacy
really is all the charities
and all the cancer kids
and the wonderful things
that he supported.
You know, Paul sprinkled
his winnings and success
and profits from his food company
all around the world
to help a lot of deserved people
that wouldn't have
been helped otherwise.
I know that for him, you know,
one of his happiest moments
was when he'd go to the camp
in Connecticut, and he built
himself a little cabin
on the property,
and he could go and hide out.
And the kids had no clue
who he was,
and that's all it was about for him.
I knew he was sick,
but for some reason,
I just never felt that anything
could happen to Paul.
The last race that he came to,
he made an effort to, like,
sit down and just have a chat.
He kept staring at me
in the eyes, you know.
I'll never forget that.
You know, there was
something like a premonition,
like he thought, "this is gonna
be our last conversation."
He made a special trip up here.
He was gonna drive
a few last laps.
The track was closed that day.
But he was too weak for that.
He sat in the back seat
of a station wagon
and was driven around.
He knew that was gonna
be his last trip up here
and it meant a lot him
to come to this place
where everything had started.
He didn't want to have
any visitors at the hospital.
In his last days, you know,
I'd have liked
to have gone and seen him,
but he didn't want that.
I don't think he wanted
anyone to show any pity.
I think he had certain disdain
for that.
I certainly remember my moments,
and they were always precious.
I think about him often.
I spent 15 weekends a year
with the man for 20 years,
so I knew him pretty well.
He was a very special guy,
and I was very privileged
to have known him
and been in his life
a little bit, you know?
Paul was a unique human being.
It was a thrill
to call him a friend.
He was an unbelievably humble guy,
who had a lot of great ability...
More than he recognized in himself.
In a way, it's a shame he
didn't start 20 years earlier,
what, do you feel like he
could have been one of the best?
Absolutely, absolutely.
What do you miss about Paul Newman?
Everything about him.
Every minute.
They just don't make
them like him anymore.
They don't make them like that.
I think the whole
of Paul Newman is what I miss.
He's one of those rare individuals
that can never be replaced
in any way, shape, or form.
Everything positive you could
think of about a human being,
that represented Paul Newman.
I consider myself luckier than Paul
because I had Paul for a brother.
He couldn't say that.
Source used: Maur0