BUTLER — Jim Lake has had a string of success with his 1941 Willys coupe.
Last year, the eye-catching car won the Best Orphan in the Butler Days car show.
In 12 shows this year, the car has brought home “Best-of-Show” in five contests, including Saturday’s Butler Days car show at Butler Church of Christ.
With bright, sunny skies, the event drew 91 entries.
Lake and wife Kathy have driven the car several times from their home in Hanover, Michigan. For Saturday’s awards presentation, Jim wore an orange hat, T-shirt and shoes to match the car’s candy pearl tangerine exterior.
“I keep adding a little bit of color to him,” Kathy said. “I tell him, ‘You’re wearing what I buy you.’”
Given the car’s success, it’s been a winning formula.
Jim believes airplane polish, instead of traditional car wax, is another winning ingredient. “I think it’s a better protectant,” he said.
Under the hood, the coupe has a 427-cubic-inch Chevrolet motor and orange interior. The Lakes have owned the car for 10 years and drive it to every show.
When they purchased it in 2003, it was complete, “but it needed a lot of work,” he said. An air-ride suspension was added, along with new front tires and tail pipes to name a few updates.
“He works on this baby day in and day out,” Kathy said.
The Mayor’s Choice award went to a 1957 Chevrolet owned by Roger Wessel of Auburn.
The Butler Police Department’s award went to a 1938 Jaguar owned by Terry Uehlein of Auburn.
The Pastor’s Choice award went to a 1966 Chevrolet II SS owned by Dave Winn of Butler.
These awards were also presented:
Best 4x4 — Jake Fetters, Auburn, 1992 Jeep Wrangler.
Best General Motors — Tom and Vicki Bishop, Auburn, 1968 Chevrolet Camaro.
Best Ford — Janet and Jim Paule, Bryan, Ohio, 1970 Ford Mustang Mach I.
Best Chrysler — Chad Parker, Auburn, 2013 Dodge Challenger.
Best Motorcycle — Adam Wies, Butler, 2012 Harley-Davidson Street Glide.
Best Truck — Mary Lehman, Bryan, Ohio, 1948 Chevrolet.