Starting his racing career in 1946, Curtis Turner has a long list of achievements. With a total of 17 wins in the NASCAR Cup Series, 73 top-10 finishes, and 16 pole positions, Turner raced with the philosophy “Run it ‘til it breaks or wins”. His immense talent was unquestionable, and his many records only support that fact.
Turner was the only driver to win two consecutive Grand National races, leading in every single lap, from the pole. He was also the only driver to record an impressive 25 wins in a single season, in the same car. Turner was particularly famous for his unique and sometimes outrageous style of driving.
His 360 race wins in stock car racing meant that he was one of the brightest stars in dirt track racing. Turner often popped other drivers on the track and even sent some cars flying over the fence, thus earning himself the nickname “Pops”. In the 1950 season, Turner led the most number of laps completed category, numbering to 1626, and also number of laps led, 1110, and races led, 12. An attempt to form a driver’s union resulted in a lifelong ban from racing by NASCAR, the ban was later lifted in 1965.
A flamboyant person, Turner was also a successful entrepreneur, making millions dealing with timberland. Curtis Turner lost his life in a plane crash, on October, 1970. To honor his achievement he was inducted into the National Motorsports Press Association’s Hall of Fame, at Darlington Raceway. Late in 1992, he received the honor of being inducted into the Internationl Motorsports Hall of Fame in Talladega, Alabama.