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Friday, September 29, 2023
NOTLers bring old-school class to McLaren show
Jim Goetz' red Austin Healy was a big hit among car fans at Saturday's McLaren supercar show. Dave Van de Laar
NOTLers brought out various vintage luxury cars from brands like Porsche, Rolls Roys and Jaguar to show off next to the McLarens on Saturday. Dave Van de Laar
Neil and Michelle Wallis brought out their vintage Rolls Royce to their first car show in Old Town. Dave Van de Laar

Some people would jump at the chance to show off their vintage cars next to some of the most impressive vehicles in the world. 

That’s just what Niagara-on-the-Lake residents Jim Goetz and Michelle Wallis did. 

During the McLaren supercar street party last Saturday, NOTL vintage car owners had the opportunity to flaunt their best machines in a worthy spot across from the McLarens. 

Goetz’s dazzling red 1958 Austin Healy model 100-6 was naturally a hit for onlookers and car fans. 

“As soon as I parked the car, a guy came up to me and said, ‘This car is going to be the most popular of the entire show,’ ” Goetz told The Lake Report. 

He is involved in the vintage car scene and an active member of the Niagara British Car Club, which is how he learned about the McLaren show. 

“When I got the Austin Healy I was looking for a place to socialize with people who have a fellow interest in British cars,” he said. 

He added that there are a lot of people with mechanical knowledge on hand in the group.

 “So, if you have to do some quirky thing come up they usually know how to fix it.” 

Wallis’ black 1934 Rolls-Royce model 20/25 is almost entirely original and when in need of a tune-up, her husband Neil often is called upon. 

“It looks like the ones that the Queen had been driving but it’s a lower model. It’s all original, aside from being painted in the ’60s. And the back seat’s leather was replaced then as well.”

Having lived in town for under a decade, Wallis said they haven’t been to many car shows but appreciated having one right in NOTL with the chance to chat and network.

“My husband is British and he just loves British cars and tinkering with them,” she said. 

As for her favourite car of the day, Wallis said Goetz’s Austin Healy as a stand-out ride, among others. 

“I think the old silver Jag (was a favourite too). That one was very cool.”

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