Incredible Read: This Profile Of Danny Thompson And The Challenger 2 Is Automotive Writing Perfection

Incredible Read: This Profile Of Danny Thompson And The Challenger 2 Is Automotive Writing Perfection

Every now and again we run into some motorsports jouralism that really knocks us back on our keister and today is one of those days. This piece was published by Smithsonian about a month ago but we had never seen it until right now. It’s the story of Danny Thompson and the Challenger 2, his 448mph, dual nitro burning hemi powered monster that bridges history, bridges lives, and draws people to it like moths to flame.

The story has been well documented, Danny pulling the old hot rod out of the barn and revamping it, repowering it, eventually creating the fastest piston driven car in the world and in doing so completing the loop his late father started making more than 50 years ago.

We do not need to rehash the story of Mickey Thompson here, it is told with wonderful skill and beautiful language at the link below. The old photos, several of which we had never seen, the quotes from Danny Thompson and his passion for this project, along with the craftsmanship of the author make this an absolutely wonderful piece.

It’ll be the best time you spend today and the best thing you read all week. Check it out here –

Hit the image below to read this amazing profile on Danny Thompson –


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8 thoughts on “Incredible Read: This Profile Of Danny Thompson And The Challenger 2 Is Automotive Writing Perfection

  1. Clarence Sifton

    Artfully great true story, of a legend and his son. I was a young boy building model cars, one being the Challenger 1 a 1/25th scale model by Revell and at the same time Breedlove and Arfons were battling it out on the salt of Bonneville.

    Thanks for including this article even though it was belated it kind of reminds me of when I was growing up trying to follow Bonneville. There was no internet and the monthly magazines were two months or more out of sinc with actual time and by the time you read it, it was history. But I didn’t realize it then anyway!

  2. Chevy Hatin' Mad Geordie

    Awesome! Mickey Thompson was and is my all time motor sport hero and I still have a 1959 copy of Popular Hot Rodding which features an LSR record blitz using four cars using Pontiac engines and he designed and built three of them . The odd one out was a Pontiac Fury sedan and he broke a host of international speed records. Surely some Hollywood film director should read this piece as his life story, tragic death and Danny’s drive to carry on in Dad’s footsteps would make an amazing movie!

  3. Gary D

    Fabulous. I live in So Cal and came of age in the 1960’s and Mickey Thompson was at the forefront of everything related to car racing. His son taking a record in a car designed 50 years ago is a feat!

  4. brfivefournine

    Outstanding story, a great example of the love and respect that the kid had for his father, a rarity in today’s world.

  5. Singapore Hot Rod

    If you’re ever near the Salt Flats, whatever time of year, go there. It doesn’t matter if they are racing or not. Walk out on the salt and stand there in the silence. Meditate on the giants of speed who have battled physics and mechanics for nothing more than their own self satisfaction of knowing for a moment they were the best at going fast.

    The salt is a sacred place for us gear-heads. Go there. Stand there. Feel the aura of the giants of speed.

  6. Million Dollar

    What an incredible man him and his wife too bad about what happened to them, he brought so much to this world bring you in so many ideas and items things we still use today I\’m running my Mickey Thompson valve covers on my car is right now everytime I look at him I think about Mickey I hope he\’s in hot rod heaven looking down realizing that we really appreciated him.
    I really think about devoting some essays to him

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