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Tommy Callahan, a fiercely competitive stock car driver, is suspended from racing when he blacks out and kills another driver. Unable to obtain a new sponsor, he goes to work for Pete Madsen's Thrill Circus and joins Madsen's daughter Francie and her boyfriend, Eddie Sands, in staging phony crashes and sideswipes. Under Tommy's coaching, Eddie trains for professional racing and is the surprise winner of his first major track event. Ecstatic over the victory, he is an easy victim for Tommy's former girl friend, thrill-hungry Annie Blaine. Meanwhile, Tommy's continued blackouts have become a matter of great concern to Francie. Despite the increasing friction between them, Tommy and Eddie are eventually sponsored as teammates in a 500-mile race. During the meet, Tommy blacks out but recovers upon realizing that his trauma is caused by guilt feelings over a childhood accident in which he ran over his brother with a go-cart. Near the end of the race, Eddie responds to Annie's goadings and attempts to take the lead, despite orders to keep his car behind Tommy's. As a result, he slams into a wall and is seriously injured. Tommy goes on to win the race and is rewarded with both the trophy and Francie's embrace.