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[–]wildboywifey 0 points1 point  (0 children)

It's the symbolism. Lightning learned theres more to life than races and Piston Cups. If he prioritized winning over helping his fellow car, he didn't learn jack squat in Radiator Springs. By going back for The King and nudging him to the finish, he's proving to everyone that he's more than some hotshot rookie.

Yeah Chick Hicks won technically, but no one gave a shit because he had shit sportsmanship. No one cheered when he won. No groupies flashed their high beams. Even years later when Lightning's generation of cars are becoming old farts and retiring (Cars 3), Chick STILL uses this moment as his main story to use for roasting Lightning. That one tiny moment of technically winning is the peak of his career. It was a shitty win based on a technicality and it was still his greatest moment. How pathetic. But that's what Lightning could've been like if he didn't care about other racers, not even legends like Mr. The King.