Smithsonian

Danny Thompson

Danny Thompson is the son of racing legend Mickey Thompson who in 1960, on the Bonneville Salt Flats became the first American to go over 400mph in a piston-driven vehicle.  Thompson's car-- the Challenger, an 8,000 point, 3,000 horsepower streamliner with four V-8 engines he built with his own hands, broke during the next run of the race.  Nonetheless, under that high Utah sky, Mickey Thompson became an American hero.

In 1988, Mickey Thompson and his wife were savagely murdered by their business partner Michael Goodwin.  

Danny Thompson lived under the shadow of his heroic father.   After his father's murder, he set out in pursuit of his father's unfinished legacy.  In August of 2018, also on the Bonneville Salt Flats, at the wheel of the Challenger 2, a 32 foot long streamliner he built with his father, Danny became the world land speed record holder by reaching a speed of 448.757 mph.