Andrew Penny, September 13 2022

Third Prize

To my dismay it happened again. I drove to a car show in Vermont and won a prize…  I joined over 500 cars at the British Invasion in Stowe, Vermont. It’s about 5 hours from Ottawa with lots of pretty and really twisty roads. 

 I go to these shows because I like cars, especially British cars. My car is really only an excuse to hang out with a bunch of car guys from all over North America.  I learn lots, hear great stories and meet people from very different environments.  While I like talking about British cars, what I really enjoy is driving them. Hard.   

 Some folks go to these shows with the intent of winning best of show or best of class and so on. They clean, and wax, and polish, and hunt down original bits and pieces to restore their cars as they left the factory. It brings them joy. Me, I give it a quick wipe down and make sure all the bits are in place and go to the show. Nonetheless, after the judging on Saturday they ended up awarding me third prize in my category. 

But the thing is, the cars are judged solely on appearances and not on performance. The ratbag of a car that’s driven hard every day may not look like much but, it is doing what it was built for – to run well and bring joy to the driver. 

 For many, looking good is what it is all about. And why not, with the right polish you can win a shelf full of trophies. But as leaders we need to see though the polish and focus on performance: 

So, while the half-million dollar Rolls Royce Cullinan looked fantastic (replete with umbrella holder and champagne chiller) – my conversation with the owner was all about how well it drives.

Written by

Andrew Penny


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