If it wasn’t for my dad, I don’t think I’d be into cars the way I am today. In fact, my whole life, my career is centered on cars—all thanks to my dad. The story is the same for many a car enthusiast; we were indoctrinated into the car culture by our fathers.
For Mathieu Houtreille of Luxembourg, Belgium, ever since he was able to walk, his dad took him to car shows and races where the sights, smells, and sounds got into his blood, hooking him for life. It was a shared passion between father and son.
There was a difference, though. While his dad tinkered on European cars, Mathieu’s passion burned for American muscle; Corvettes to be exact. The flames burned only hotter with visits to the States, where he could see a big American V8 in its natural habitat! Back home, he searched for a Corvette of his own to drive and enjoy.
His first Vette was a gorgeous ‘76, but during one of his many trips to the states, Mathieu attended the Barrett-Jackson auction where he realized his true desire was for a Midyear.
He finally found a beautiful Ermine White ’65 Sting Ray equipped with a small-block and side pipes. It was the test drive that reeled him in. At 110 mph, the owner let up off the throttle and let the pipes do the talking. He was sold.
The Sting Ray is unique on the streets of Luxembourg, and that’s exactly what Mathieu wants. The vintage lines of the Midyear speak of an era of creativity and artistry that’s since long gone, forever celebrated in fiberglass and metal; a testament to the era in which it was built.
There will be many influences in this world, but as long as there are dads in this world, there will be children whose lives will be shaped, molded, and forever influenced under the watchful eyes of father. What’s your influence?
Living in Richmond, Texas, PJ Rentie has been in the automotive industry for more than 30 years. This former Assistant Editor at Vette Magazine also spent time with companies like NOS, Edelbrock, Hillbank Motorsports, Classic Industries, and was an automotive instructor for Cypress College for ten years. In his spare time, PJ hopes to one day bring his Fox Body Mustang out of the back yard and back onto the street!