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  • Writer's pictureFrank Oles

Geneva Concours 2023

Even though I attend a variety of car events over the course of a summer, my two biggest priorities are the Oakbrook Father's Day Car Show and Geneva Concours. This year was especially important to me because one of the featured segments of the show would be "Fast and Furious-style Japanese Tuner Cars." Of course, 90s Japanese cars are a personal favorite of mine, so I was sure to get my application to the show submitted way back in January, giving me (I thought) ample time to get my cars ready for the show. Unfortunately, my GTR did not get finished in time. So it would be up to my 240SX to represent the Oles family passion for cars at this prestigious event. Thankfully, the 240 made it to the show without any issues, looking perfect in its new Rosso Corsa Red paint job.

I was also able to secure a spot for our Citroens in the Club Parking area of the event. Cindy drove the 2CV, my Father Stan drove the Traction Avant, Clay drove the SM, and family friend Doug drove the DS convertible. It was fantastic to see all these cars together at the event, and they all made the trip to Geneva and back home without even a hiccup.

In the Tuner Category, I was also pleased to join my friend Joe's Toyota MR2 (RHD, turbo) and my friend Val's silver NSX. Val worked through the week and final evening to get his NSX ready for the event after it had been sitting in storage for a number of years. It was so great to see our car group reunited again with these special machines, all featuring pop-up headlights!

The 240SX brought home a Carl Benz trophy for the class! It was a tremendous honor to be recognized for all the hard work that my Dad, Uncle Jim, and I put into this car over the past 6 years. I think the judges were impressed with the level of detail on the car, as well as the special features like the air cup front lift, the detailed engine bay, and the Haltech standalone ECU. The car also won a ribbon for 3rd Place from children judges sponsored by Hagerty Insurance. I was especially honored to receive that award considering that the car was competing against every other car in the show for their attention.

It was amazing to share this moment of triumph with my son Clay and my father Stan. It is moments like this that make all the hard work worth it. It was a day we will remember for a long time!

A standout car in our Tuner Class was Chad's stunning R33 GTT on Blitz wheels and Stance Air Cups. The car certainly looked the part with its factory candy red paint glistening in the sun.

Another car that caught my eye at the show was this Bugatti Veyron. It is one thing to see a Bugatti in pictures, but it see it in person is a very special event. There are so many cool details to appreciate, like the roof scoops and the pop-up wing.

This McLaren Senna was also a standout at the show to me. I believe this car is owned by the Hamilton Collection. The deep metallic flake in the paint is simply stunning. Although this car might look awkward to some in photos, in person it is pure aggression, with so many scoops and wings and air management devices.

There was a great selection of modern hypercars at this event, including this Ford GT. Although the styling of the 05-06 Ford GT will always be a favorite of mine, I can appreciate how Ford advanced the ball to create this modern interpretation of the concept.

It was a rare treat to see this DeTomaso Pantera 90 Si on display. Only 41 of these were produced, and they represent the last of the Pantera line. Some interesting details, including the F40-style rear wing and the unusual cowl spoiler at the base of the front windshield. Cars like this are one of the reasons I love the Geneva Concours.

Lincoln was another featured class at the show this year. This custom-bodied example was incredible, with its fishbowl-like clear acrylic roof and porthole-style quarter windows. Wide whitewall tires add to the posh look.

Best paint at the show would have to go to this Rolls Royce coupe. It faded from medium to dark metallic blue. Pure class and a visual treat to behold from every angle!

Although I tend to favor the mid-engine Ferrari automobiles, this Ferrari F12 really caught my eye. There is something about a front-engine V12 Ferrari that is just "right."

My favorite car of the show was this OSCA 1600 GTZ. It was perfectly petite, about the size of a Lotus Elite, with beautifully sculpted bodywork. The Zagato double bubble roof just adds to the incredible detail of this car. Lightweight and nimble, this car epitomizes for me everything that is perfect with a 1960s-era sports car.

Picture time with the boys! One of the great things about classic car ownership is being able to share events like this with family and friends. It is usually a lot of work getting the cars ready, but the end result is always worth it for moments like these.

I was very happy to win this trophy for the 240SX. Over the past 6 years, there have been many challenges with this car, between collecting parts for the bodywork, swapping the SR20DET engine, getting the car tuned and then finally painted. In the end, it all came together, with the culmination of this project being this trophy to admire on my mantle. I am so excited to see what the future holds, for the 240, for the GTR, and for future projects in the Oles Garage.

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