Autistic teen receives racing lessons


Dylan Thompson, left, stands with Jack Steel.


From Contributed Reports

Saturday, February 9, 2019

Dylan Thompson's joy has been watching racing at County Line Raceway.

Watching others go round and round on the track, he could only imagine when his turn might come.

His turn did come.

Videos of him doing karate and go-kart racing were posted on Facebook by his grandmother — and a sponsor from Virginia contacted Dylan with an offer to teach him how to race.

The sponsor, Jack Steel, invited Dylan and his family to Virginia International Raceway. Dylan and his family went there and Dylan took classes and driving courses to teach him driving and racing, during which he spent three hours in a classroom setting and three hours on a simulating machine.

Next, he was given a driving test course and did very well. Dylan did so well on the driving course, the instructor was advised to let Dylan drive — and the instructor radioed back and said Dylan had been driving the whole time. 

Dylan is scheduled to return to go to the next level of training. The sponsors gave Dylan a special racing uniform with boots and his own helmet. The test drive car was a Crown Victoria. As Dylan gets more experience, the car he drives will be smaller, which is standard size for racing.

Dylan is excited to have sponsors and training to race — all paid for by the sponsors.

What makes this special is that Dylan is autistic — and for special needs people like him, this story is out of the normal.

But Dylan believes in Jesus and knows that through Jesus, all things are possible. His favorite scripture is Mark 10:31: “The first shall be last and the last shall be first.”

The scriptures were taught to Dylan by his karate instructor for 3½ years, James Dozia.