The Cayman Islands International Car Show, hosted by Tony’s Toys, drew roughly 4,000 people to Camana Bay’s Festival Green, according to event organizer Rhonda Kelly.
“It was a fantastic event and it had something for everyone,” Kelly said. “We estimated around 4,000 people in attendance. We’ve calculated the attendance based on the number of tickets sold to adults and children.”
Approximately 90 vehicles were on display Saturday and 71 were entered in the competition. International judges Landris Folkes and Jeff Hunyh were tasked with determining the winning cars in the following categories: Luxury Car/SUV, Euro Luxury/GT, Sport Compact Stock, Sport Compact Modified, Custom, Classic, Race, American Muscle, Motorcycle Sport, Motorcycle Cruiser and Truck/Jeep.
The public also had a chance to vote via ballot for the “Best in Show” and Ronnie Forbes’s 1976 Mercedes Benz 450 SLC came through as the crowd’s favorite.
Folkes, who owns Island Boy Tuning in South Florida, said he saw a well-rounded selection of cars at the event.
“The cars are very meticulously put together and I love the fact that they’re mixed,” Folkes said. “There’s not just BMWs and Porsches, there’s a little bit of everything, you see Ferraris, you see Hondas, Skylines – it’s been really well put together.”
The vehicles were judged on certain criteria including: cleanliness, engine modifications, wheels, quality of the interior as well as in-car entertainment, according to Folkes. He added that he was impressed by Cayman’s car culture.
“It’s actually mind-blowing, I never thought it was this big, I thought the Cayman Islands was best known for its culinary excellence, it (the car culture) is going to be bigger than pretty much any other of these small islands, so to speak. I’m standing here and I still can’t believe it and I drive a thousand-plus horsepower Supra,” he said.
Owner of Tony’s Toys, Tony Williams, said he believes the car show will revive Cayman’s car culture in the future. Williams said he plans on hosting an international car show every two years and is looking to expand the variety of show offerings so that “car lovers can come hang out and shoot the breeze.”
“I think this is going to revive the car culture in the Cayman Islands,” Williams said. “Shows tend to drive the passion. When people spend a lot of time detailing, modifying and caring for the cars and have no place to show it off, it tends to dampen your passions but when you do have a properly organized venue, it then drives you to do more.”
The festivities were popular among all ages, according to Williams.
“One of the sweet things with this show is you have folks in their 70’s showing off their older cars and folks in their teens showing off their newer cars. We are more than just about selling cars, we want to continue to help to excite car enthusiasts by doing events like this so that we can all come out and have fun.”
Kids enjoyed the Digicel LTE Speedway – where they were able to race remote control cars for the chance to win trophies and the grand prize of a Samsung Active S4 and the women were pampered with mini-massages, mini-pedicures and mini-manicures in the Heels and Wheels tent.
“The goal of this show was to create a unique experience, one that would bring out women and kids, not just car enthusiasts,” said Williams.