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Built With Speedway Motors: Jennifer's '60 Cadillac

5/4/2021
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Jennifer Helgoth was born into a car family. She grew up helping her dad do car stuff and, in her words “it never left me.” She grew up scouring through the Hot Wheels aisle at the store. She says she also played with Barbies, “but my Barbie had to have the coolest car.”

You know you’re talking to a serious gearhead when they’re not actually sure how many cars they own. When we asked how many she had, there was a long pause. “Fourteen, I think.” Ten of them are Cadillacs.

Why all the Caddy’s? There are a couple reasons, and the first one goes all the way back to a 5-year-old Jennifer riding in the car with her mom. The oldies station was playing, and when she heard Elvis Presley for the first time, the hook was set. It doesn’t take a very deep read into the history of The King to learn about his affinity for Cadillacs. Jennifer’s first die cast car was Elvis’ ’56 Caddy and now she owns her own full-size version. Jennifer also loves that Cadillacs are unique and will stand out in a crowd of Tri-Five Chevy’s and 60’s muscle.

The car you see pictured here is her 1960 Series 62. She fell in love with the flat-top design and the enormous roof was just begging for a custom paint job. You see, Jennifer has an auto body degree and spends her day working at the local Auto Body Supply, so she knows a thing or two about squirting paint. When it came time to shoot the roof of the ’60, she locked herself in the paint booth and didn’t come out until 13 hours had passed and the car emerged looking like this. It’s covered in wild panels, fish scales, lace, scallops, and the panel above the back glass features an “endless line” design. This was Jennifer’s first time spraying ‘flake and her first attempt at anything nearly this crazy. We think it came out great and can’t wait to see how she paints the other nine Caddy’s that are patiently awaiting their turn in the booth.

This summer, Jennifer will be marrying our friend Derek Turner. If that name sounds familiar, you may have read about his ’55 or his dad’s ’56 here on the Toolbox. Jennifer and Derek work on their projects together, push each other to keep building, and even have a friendly little game going to see who can accumulate the most projects. While it would seem that they already have enough to keep themselves busy for a very long time, both are quite prolific and have already finished a few knockout cars, so we wouldn’t be surprised to see them with an even bigger fleet of mid-century iron ready to fire up and hit the road in the near future.

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