The Mathews collection is a dynamic and eclectic collection of some of the finest cars in the world. Although many different types of cars are admired by Harry Mathews, his son Greg and son-in-law Mark Burgard, the collection is focused on sports cars, vintage racing cars and motorcycles. However, the collecting doesn’t stop there. Original art, gas pumps and signs, peddle cars, memorabilia, bicycles, and RC airplanes are all nicely displayed.
It started when Harry was 14 years old and traded a horse for a Whizzer motorbike. He never looked back (or owned another horse). His first sports car was a 1953 Jaguar XK120 Roadster that he purchased for $795 in 1959. The actual collection started around 1970 when over a period of time Harry purchased about 20 cars of various makes and models including Porsche, Ferrari, Mercedes, and Jaguar. After years of racing off-road motorcycles, Harry had the urge to compete on four wheels. Starting in 1978 he entered track events in his Porsche 928. In 1984 he started vintage road racing driving a Lotus 51 Formula Ford. Soon after his son Greg and daughter Pam followed.
Harry's career was spent developing and manufacturing equipment for commercial carwash operations. A life long interest in sports cars and motorcycles led to Harry acquiring a dealer licensed to buy and sell collector cars with emphasis on vintage race cars i.e.; McLaren’s , Brabhams, Lotus etc. Harry is still actively involved in vintage racing and riding various motorcycles. At one point the Mathews Collection had an emphasis on McLaren racing cars. As many as 25 different McLaren cars of various models graced the collection over the years with as many as 15 at one time. Currently there are three McLaren Can-Am cars still in the collection. The attraction to McLaren cars started in 1987 when Harry and Greg went to Road America for a race event. While there, they saw a 1967 McLaren M1-C for sale. They followed the seller home to Kansas and brought back the first of many McLaren cars to follow. This car is one of the three remaining in the collection today.
Recent focus has been on America’s Sports Car, the Chevrolet Corvette. There are around 15 different Corvettes (give or take) currently in the collection. Over the years the collection has housed over 30 different model years of Corvette. An array of motorcycles, classic English sports cars, as well as some of the finest Europe has to offer also call the “Collection” home. A recent move to a newer, nicer but smaller facility made necessary a need to downsize the collection, while at the same time upgrading the quality and collectability of the remaining cars.