World of Wheels (Autorama), which pulled into Winnipeg over the weekend, is a custom car show featuring vehicles of today and yesteryear.
The 42nd annual event, held at the RBC Convention Centre, honoured the workmanship of racers, mechanics and engineers, and celebrated the many fans of motorsports.
My name is Gracie Sweetstory and I am a storybook character who usually resides in the pages of my alter ego. I had occasion to step out of my comfort zone when I returned to my car one day last summer to find an invite on the windshield to put my orange car on display at Winnipeg’s World of Wheels in their Pumpkin Patch.
Having been referred to as the Little Old Lady from Pasadena after attending car shows at the Ponoma California Sportsplex, I thought I better check this out. Jan & Dean did say “Go Granny Go.” So I went.
My car is supercharged which means I get a lot of attention at gas stations, stop lights, and parking lots. I’ve done 120 miles per hour around the track at Road America, Wisconsin, so attending my first Winnipeg car show seemed timely.
Since my alter ego is a repurposed school career counsellor, I was particularly interested in Student Day at World of Wheels. It began in 2006 as a way to support Automotive courses at high schools.
Students meet industry leaders, car owners and builders as well as career reps from colleges and tech schools.
There are many scholarships available to the student who chooses a car career path.
One of the highlights for me at the show was the induction of Frank Mancini into the Manitoba Motorsport Hall of Fame.
It was obvious everybody loves this octogenarian. Among his many accomplishments Frank owned and operated Metro Motors specializing in foreign cars until his retirement in 2013.
Frank Mancini was a founding member of the Winnipeg Sports Car Club (1952).
He won many driving championships over years and his most memorable achievement was winning the 1966 Canadian Mechanic of the Year award.
Frank’s dad had a model T and that love of cars continues to this day with his 1948 MG TC.
In his acceptance speech for the award given by his peers for outstanding efforts in motorsports, Frank summed up a lifetime of sage advise with his closing remarks, “Have fun and drive carefully.”
All photos (except top two) by Doug Kretchmer