Sandy and the girls rev it up with 500 hot rodders

WAY OF LIFE: Port Fairy's Sandy Winnen and her 1936 Ford Roadster at Sunday's Port Fairy Rod Run. Organisers said more than 500 cars and motorbikes were on display. Picture: Rob Gunstone
WAY OF LIFE: Port Fairy's Sandy Winnen and her 1936 Ford Roadster at Sunday's Port Fairy Rod Run. Organisers said more than 500 cars and motorbikes were on display. Picture: Rob Gunstone

Sandy Winnen loves getting the girls together and cruising the region’s roads with the music pumping.

And as she and her friends drove into the Port Fairy Rod Run on Sunday in her red 1936 Ford Roadster, it was like the Pink Ladies from Grease had returned. 

Sandy’s two cars were part of over 500 vehicles on display in the sunshine that had South West Street Rodders president Jack Hutchins smiling in relief after Saturday’s wind and rain.

Mr Hutchins and about 40 volunteers have been hard at work for months putting on the spectacular show’n’shine day that attracts car and motorbike lovers from around Australia.

He said he was delighted to see the sun shining and thousands of people streaming through the gates.

“How good is it out there,” he said. “It’s looking bigger than ever, we’ve had people come from all over to see this, including one couple who drove down from Darwin.

“The work of the volunteers is just so huge. It takes months to prepare. Even the T-shirts have to be printed in February.”

For Sandy, cars are a passion and a way of life.

“Hot rodding is very addictive, we just love going to the different runs around Australia and it’s like being part of a big family,” she said.

The Port Fairy resident and her husband own eight cars but her Australian-made ‘36 Roadster is her favourite.

“I just love the body shape, it’s a seven-seater, it’s a party car,” she laughed.

When asked how much has been spent on the cars, Sandy laughs and says “too much”.

“But all my kids have grown up with it and love it, they’re still involved,” she added.

Alongside Sandy’s Roadster was an immaculate blue 1951 Cadillac convertible that once served as an American consulate car in Canberra.

“We don’t drive that one much, it’s straight and very special,” she said.