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Dick Thompson Award

Dick Thompson Award



Presented by the
Corvette Club of America
with Sport Chevrolet

Dick Thompson and the Origin of the Award

The Corvette Club of America, Inc. created the Dick Thompson Award in late 2013 to promote competitive motorsport and high performance driver education (HPDE) activities within the club. This award is intended to recognize competitive and HPDE accomplishments while complementing the club's long history of civic, charitable, and social activities.

Dick Thompson #11 1960
Dick Thompson on the starting grid at Marlboro Raceway in a Corvette Stingray protoype - 1960

Dick Thompson was a member of the Corvette Club of America from the earliest days of the club. On April 13, 1959 he was elected to lifetime honorary member status. Regrettably, he passed away on September 14, 2014 before the first year of the award was complete. In October, 2014 his wife, Eve Lloyd Thompson, was elected as an honorary member of the club.

Dick Thompson #11 1960
Dick Thompson, seated in race car, was a Washington dentist who was a champion sports-car driver in the 1950s and 1960s. Also pictured, from left, Mrs. Montgomery Winkler, William Norton and Mrs. David Roethel. (Photo by Peter Luongo)
Dick Thompson, champion race-car driver known as 'Flying Dentist,' dies at 94

The following short description was taken from Wikipedia:

Richard Knight Thompson, Jr. (July 9, 1920 – September 14, 2014) was an American racecar driver. A Washington, D.C. dentist by trade, he is known as "The Flying Dentist". He won numerous Sports Car Club of America (SCCA) championships and was inducted in the Corvette Hall of Fame. Thompson brought credibility to the Corvette as a world-class sports car. Active from the late 1950s until the 1970s, Thompson raced for several notable racers, including the factory Corvette team for John Fitch and Briggs Cunningham.

Thompson started racing in 1952 in one of the first 12-hour races at Sebring International Raceway. He drove to the track in his MG TD, and co-drove the car to an eighth-place finish. He caught Corvette engineer Zora Arkus-Duntov's eye in 1956, when Thompson was the only driver to compete in a production Corvette. He won the SCCA championship in his Corvette in 1956, 1957, 1960, 1961 and 1962 in Classes A, B and C. He was selected to test drive a new Corvette Grand Sport at Sebring in December 1962. In 1963, he drove a Corvette Grand Sport to victory at Watkins Glen International. He took third place that year at Daytona International Speedway and won the GT class in 1970.

In addition to being elected to the National Corvette Museum Hall of Fame in 2000 he was also inducted into the Le Mans Drivers Hall of Fame in 2013. He was inducted into the Sports Car Club of America Hall of Fame in January 2018.

The Silver Bowl

The centerpiece for the Dick Thompson Perpetual Award is a silver bowl that was presented to Dick in July, 1957 at the first National competition held at Marlboro Raceway by the Washington DC Region of the Sports Car Club of America. The Corvette Club of America is honored to have received this historically significant trophy from Dick and Eve Thompson.

The club is fortunate to have a full record of the races that day because the event was covered by Sports Illustrated.

Dick Thompson Trophy
The front side of the bowl is engraved as follows:
Sports Car Club of America
Washington Region
Pot Hunter's Trophy Race
Overall Winner
1957
Dick Thompson Award

Dick Thompson Award Selection Committee

The selection committee was formed by the CCA Board of Directors as provided by Article 8, Section 1 of the club bylaws. The Board selected two members from the Board to serve on the committee and identified one of them to serve as the Chairperson. In addition, all prior recipients of the Dick Thompson Award serve as committee members so long as they remain CCA members in good standing.

The selection committee will identify, at most, one CCA member per year to receive the award. The recipient will receive a personal plaque at the club's annual Awards Dinner and have their name added to the perpetual trophy. Being selected for the award is a lifetime appointment. The goal of the selection committee is to select a candidate for the award that Dick Thompson himself would have selected.

The intent of the award is to both encourage and reward participation in competitive motorsports and high performance driver education. Beyond this, it is also important that award winners be well rounded, and active representatives of the CCA. Beside being a founding member of the CCA, Dick Thompson was well known for his willingness to help others improve their skills and was the author of "The Corvette Guide" in 1958. He was a noted champion for the Corvette brand and was selected to be a spokesperson for Corvette on many occasions. His 2000 induction into the Corvette Hall of Fame states that "he brought credibility to the Corvette as a world class sports car." It is this spirit that the Dick Thompson Award recognizes.

Decision Process for the Selection Committee

A point system has been developed to help narrow the field and aid the selection committee in making their decision. It also provides a guide for prospective candidates and others to aid them in seeing many of the factors that the committee values in making their choice.

The final decision will not be just based on points however. Some factors, such as a candidate's potential for future contributions, cannot be measured by a point system. The committee will ultimately have to vote on the best candidate matching the spirit of Dick Thompson. The point system is intended to provide an important guide but the final decision will be a vote by the committee.

Dick Thompson Award Qualification Point System

Coming soon.

Inagural Presentation of the Dick Thompson Award

Statement from Eve Lloyd Thompson (January 24, 2015)

Congratulations Stephen for being the first winner of the Dick Thompson Award.
History is repeating itself!
Dick and his colleagues started an organization of interested “sporty car” owners, drivers, and friends, etc.
Everyone who wanted to Go Fast!
The group named themselves the Lavender Hill Mob, and Dick like you, was the very busy Competition Director.
The "Mob" established Marlboro as their racetrack, and again, like you, encouraged drivers from everywhere to compete at their events.
Dick won your Pot Hunter trophy as the high point winner.
He commented last year how pleased he was that the trophy was having a new life. Like you, Dick won a lot because he drove at other tracks, and along the way made many friends.
He was very pleased to be a member of CCA.
All the best,
Eve Lloyd Thompson

Award Winners

2019 Paul Donohue
2018 Bill Sandusky
2017 Patrick E. Roney
2016 Robert J. Atwell
2015 Stephen P. Catlin
2014 Stephen P. Catlin