Curtis Turner ( born April 12, 1924 in Floyd, Virginia, † October 14, 1970 in Punxsutawney, Pennsylvania) was an American NASCAR driver. In 1998, he became one of NASCAR's 50 Greatest Drivers, one of the 50 greatest NASCAR driver appointed.
Turner began his racing career in 1946 in Mount Airy, North Carolina, where he took part in a race, which he finished last. Turner was not disappointed, but tried again and won the race in which he had previously failed yet. From 1949 he raced in NASCAR. In his first season he won a race at the Langhorne Speedway. In the season of 1950 he again won at this track. From 1950 to 1954 he drove almost exclusively Oldsmobile, in a few races he was behind the wheel of a Nash, with whom he won a race in the season 1951. Turner is the only driver ever to win a NASCAR race in a Nash. In 1955 he drove in the Grand National Division with a Ford In the years 1956 to 1959 was a gymnast in the NASCAR Convertible Division, was driven in with convertibles, active. He participated in 79 races, of which he won 38. Later in his Grand National career, he moved frequently the car brand. In his last season in NASCAR, the 1968 season, he ran every race in which he participated, in a Plymouth. His last race in the NASCAR Grand National Division drove Turner on September 15, 1968 the Orange Speedway in Hillsboro, North Carolina. He finished the race in which Richard Petty his 13th win of the season, celebrated on the 13th Place.
Turner was one of the most successful driver of his time, but never won the championship, as he never went more than 17 races in a season. Overall, he was 17 years active and drove 183 races of which he won 17, 73 times he came in the top -10 finish. Turner was the first driver, who managed to start in two consecutive races from pole position and this without even leave the lead to win. Turner also was the first driver to the mountain in less than 15 minutes climbed Pikes Peak International Hill Climb.
Curtis Turner died on October 14, 1970 in a plane crash near Punxsutawney, Pennsylvania. In 1998 he was included in the list of the best NASCAR drivers of all time ( NASCAR's 50 Greatest Drivers).