The Vincent Bendix Trophy transcontinental race was established in 1931 to encourage experimental work in connection with increased speed in the field of aviation. The advancements made for the competition had a direct impact on the future of commercial aviation.
Air races began to lose much of their appeal after the Golden Age of Air Racing, as many high-performance aircraft were owned by the government and the military tested them in private.
Gift of the Clifford W. Henderson Family Trust
1931Maj. James H. Doolittle
1932Capt. James H. Haizlip
1935Ben O. Howard
1936Louise Thaden and Blanche Noyes
1937Frank W. Fuller Jr.
1939Frank W. Fuller Jr.
1940-45 No award
1946Paul Mantz, Jacqueline Cochran, and Col. Leon W. Gray
1947Paul Mantz, Jane Page, Col. Leon W. Gray, and Maj. Clay M. Albright
1948Paul Mantz, Jacqueline Cochran, and Ensign R. E. Brown
1949Joe DeBona and Maj. Vernon A. Ford
1951Col. Keith K. Compton
1953Maj. William T. Whisner Jr.
1954Capt. Edward W. Kenny
1955Col. Carlos M. Talbott
1956Capt. Manuel J. Fernandez Jr.
1957Capt. Kenneth D. Chandler
1958-60 No award
1961Lt. Richard F. Gordon and Lt. j.g. Bobbie R. Young
1962Capt. Robert G. Sowers, Capt. Robert MacDonald, and Capt. John T. Walton