Best Animated Prince / Hero
Lightning started out as an arrogant, selfish and conceited racecar who felt he didn’t need any help to win races. He was unsatisfied with having the small and unglamorous Rust-eze as a sponsor, intended to ditch them for Dinoco the first chance he got. When asked about his tie-breaker race and who he wanted to give his free tickets to, it dawned on him that he didn’t have any friends. After winding up in Radiator Springs by accident, he starts to lose his less desirable traits as he forms a bond with the town and its residents. He was very touched when Mater saw him as his best friend and grateful to Sally for offering him a place to stay at her motel. As a racecar, Lightning is very talented, gutsy, and confident. He strives to be the best at what he does as evidenced when he tries to make a proper turn on dirt. By the time of his tie-breaker race he has changed into a more kind and caring individual using what he learned in Radiator Springs to gain the advantage. Lightning willingly forfeits the Piston Cup so that Strip Weathers could finish his last race, having realized what’s really important in life.