In an unmarked warehouse around the corner, our friend has amassed an incredible car collection. Todd Werner and his friend Nick Buis founded Statement Marine. Their innovative approach to building offshore Catamarans and V-hulls continue to be a major force in the powerboat market.
With a few patents to his name, Todd had the flexibility to purchase a few cars. While his warehouse has the obligatory Lamborghini and a few Corvettes, the overwhelming theme is MOPAR. Dodge & Plymouth fans seem to be the most dedicated. I think this is mostly because once the cars were raced, they were not preserved with the same care as a Chevy or Ford would be.
The first duPont REGISTRY show I was invited to was in 2011. It was a Cars & Coffee at Innisbrook Country Club in Palm Harbor, Florida. I heard that a local collector was bringing a few vintage dragsters, but I had no idea what I was about to witness. Todd arrived with an original Dick Landy Hemi, and a Sox & Martin Super Stock racer. He has several cars from these legends, and the Marine Corps is thankful. That’s because his Christmas tradition is to arrive here loaded with Toys 4 Tots donations.
These cars are worth their weight in gold to drag racing fans, and it was just the tip of the iceberg. A walk through the shop will leave you in awe of altered wheelbase classics and extremely rare production cars. My personal favorite was the 1969 COPO Camaro RS.
MOPAR didn’t build many convertibles, so a soft-top Hemi ‘Cuda will stop you in your tracks. Behind it is a Baldwin-Motion Phase III Corvette that is truly 1 of 1. Instead of the vertical rear window, this car has a slant back window. This allowed the owner to carry his golf clubs around in a 9-second big block monster. The pinnacle of the collection can be seen in two cars that are painted Petty Blue.
Richard Petty’s 1970 Superbird, and 1971 Road Runner. The former was lost and presumed destroyed until Todd arrived at Petty Enterprises. Richard and his 1970 team members found photos that were unmistakable, and it was treated to a full restoration by many of the original team members. The 1971 car has a full history, as it was how Richard won the NASCAR Grand National Championship. Mr. Petty and his crew will be attending the auction to see their old friends one last time.
Nothing can cure a car addiction for people like us. Since Todd has owned these cars for many years, he is simply making room for something new. If you can’t make it to Harrisburg on the weekend of August 1st, Dana Mecum and company will be live-streaming this unprecedented event.