Considered early in his career to be too tall to make a successful jockey, Jack Thompson rode for almost 50 years.
Thompson's first win came at Tamworth in 1938, and was followed in 1939 by a win in the Summer Cup on Bunga. In 1940-41 he became the first apprentice to win a senior jockeys' premiership in Sydney, riding 106 winners. Four times he was leading apprentice, and five times the leading senior jockey.
Thompson's major race wins included four Doncaster Handicaps, two Epsom Handicaps, a Golden Slipper, the AJC and Victoria Derbies and a Sydney Cup. Three times he ran second in the Melbourne Cup, and on Dark Marne in 1948 he thought he had won the Cup; however, the newly installed photo-finish camera gave the verdict to Rimfire.
Thompson's last winner came at the age of 62 at Wyong in 1985. In his long career he had ridden close to 3,000 winners, including more than 140 feature races and 41 at Group 1.
Thompson was inducted into the Hall of Fame in 2005.