GT37 - The Hard Luck Story

Photo for GT37 - The Hard Luck Story

NAMGAR members, Mike and Cathy Finch, left their home in Falkland, Ontario, Canada, in their 1959 Iris Blue 1500 roadster for the short trip to GT-37 in Dayton, Ohio on Sunday, July 8th. The drive of just 550 miles was without incident, and they registered at the hotel on Sunday night.

Finch's carMike & Cathy's MGA prior to the accident.

The following morning they drove their car to a nearby Denny’s restaurant for breakfast. While they ate their meal, there was a big bang in the parking lot and a loud collective gasp from the restaurant’s patrons.

When they went outside, they found that a Chevrolet HHR had been driven into a minivan, which in turn had hit the front right hand side of their MGA. The HHR driver was an elderly gentleman who had a pacemaker fitted. He had left hospital the day before, the police said. The impact had broken the rear wheel of the minivan.

ImpactPoint of impact

The MGA was taken on a flat-bed truck to Carl’s Garage, where the right wing was pulled out, allowing the car to be driven back to the hotel. Mike was then directed to the MG Garage in Dayton, owned by Steve Miller. There they inspected the car more thoroughly, finding a bent kingpin and the wheel alignment way out. The tracking was adjusted, and it was determined that the damaged king pin was not so bad to prevent the car from being driven.

DamageThe damage.

Mike and Cathy presented the car in the NAMGAR Premier Class at the car show with band aids on the crinkled wing. The car had previously won the 1500 class at GT33 in Seven Springs, PA, five years earlier.

Car showMike & Cathy's MGA at the Car Show

They drove back home on Friday in convoy with John Orell’s Twin Cam as a confidence booster to get back safely. Mike and Cathy would like to thank the many people in Dayton who helped them, including:

  • Skip Peterson who provided much needed support, both at the accident scene and afterwards.
  • Lois Gribler, and the entire GT-37 organizer group, for rallying around to get the car repaired.
  • Cecilia Bruce of Scarborough Faire, who loaned them her car while the repairs were being done.
  • Jeff Decker, who offered his truck and trailer if the car was un-drivable.
  • Bill Shamonsky who acted as Mike’s chauffeur running him all over the place.
  • Jeff Zorn who offered his MGA many times.

An assessor has looked at the car, and the broker, Nancy Bearman, and Aviva Elite Insurance are professionally handling the insurance matters. We are sure that the NAMGAR family, and all MG owners, hope that the car can be restored to its former glory, and will be seen at a NAMGAR event again soon.

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Reader Comments (2)

Picture of Deborah J Wilson
Deborah J Wilson (Anchorage, AK)
on July 23, 2012 7:19pm
My heart truly goes out to you and of course, the beautiful A. I WILL see you and your A at a future GT... You were in good hands with the NAMGAR family and we should all be that lucky in life.
Picture of Bill Marshall
Bill Marshall (Manassas, VA)
on July 24, 2012 4:33pm
The MGA may be temporarily ruffled but Mike and Cathy remain beautiful people.

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Last updated on July 24, 2012.