It’s not uncommon for a father and son to get a car and go racing together, but Shawn Thompson (#72) of Ailsa Craig, has a little different situation. While Shawn’s parents have supported his racing career since day one, but it was Thompson’s uncle that took started bringing Shawn and his brother Jason to the track to compete many years ago.
Jerry Thompson was a former crew chief for Earl Ross, and first put his nephew into a car at Grand Bend in 1997. After growing up as a racer at Grand Bend Thompson moved to Delaware in an Open Wheel car, and stepped up to a FT Garage Late Model in 2009.
After tearing up some equipment along the way during his full-fendered development, Shawn put it all together in 2011. On August fifth, Thompson had a conversation with former NASCAR Cup race winner Earl Ross, “Earl told me that we had one of the fastest cars that night, and that if I could be patient I could win that night. I was, and it worked.”
It was a transformation for Thompson as he backed it up with his second win a week later, and closed the season with enough strong finishes to finish third in point.
Thompson’s adventures also include racing weekly at Grand Bend Speedway in the Mini-Truck division, and the effort is backed by Earl Ross Fabricating, Thompson Motorsports, and ‘Uncle Jerry’.
Thompson enters this season calling that first Late Model feature win a highlight of his career so far, but said, “I think it helped my confidence, and that we can win a championship. I I would love to win it for Jerry. I always call him my second dad. He’s been doing this for a really long time, but he still has a lot of interest in the sport, and in going racing with me.”