Date ArticleType
8/12/2016 Member News
Victory Automotive Service to Unveil Historic St. Pete Landmark

Victory Automotive Service to Unveil Historic St. Pete Landmark
We are pleased to announce that the 60-year-old historic Wilsey Clock of St. Petersburg, after being out of commission for the last several years, has been renovated. The clock’s full restoration will culminate with a ribbon-cutting ceremony on August 25, 2016 at 6:00pm hosted by Victory Automotive Service, and joined by the St. Petersburg Area Chamber of Commerce and by Mayor Kriseman.
When Victory Automotive Service purchased Wilsey Auto in 2014, they quickly discovered that St. Petersburg residents were big fans of the huge, four-foot-in-diameter Wilsey Clock on the outside of the building. So when the clock ceased to work, Victory Auto took steps to not only fix the inner workings of the popular timepiece, but to renovate it as well for their community.
We invite you to attend the St. Petersburg Chamber of Commerce Ribbon-Cutting Ceremony at Victory Automotive Service, 3001 Doctor Martin Luther King Jr. St. N., St. Petersburg, FL 33704, where you can also hear more about Wilsey Auto and Victory Auto’s history, get a tour of the location, meet the staff of Victory Auto, and enjoy light appetizers and beverages.
"I was happy to pass on the tradition of caring for Wilsey customers to the Victory family. In the first two years of their tenure, I have seen the Victory owners and employees continue our mission," said Caroline Spencer-Jacobs, previous owner of Wilsey Auto.
“It’s not very often that you find a repair shop that has a history and roots to the community like Wilsey Auto has had for decades. It is an honor to walk in the shadow of George Wilsey, Charlie Jacobs, and Caroline Spencer-Jacobs, and operate on the same corner they did for so many years. We hope to serve the community as successfully as they did for many years to come,” said Jeff Matt, owner of Victory Automotive.
In 1946, George Wilsey and Charles “Charlie” Jacobs (a father and son-in-law team) opened Wilsey Auto’s doors for the first time. Several years later, the historic Wilsey Clock was put into place on the front side of the repair facility along 9th Street North in St. Petersburg. George and Charlie operated the business successfully for many decades. George’s granddaughter, Caroline Spencer-Jacobs, got involved in the business in the mid-1960s while she was in her 20s. Caroline took over full operation of the business in the mid-1980s and ran Wilsey Auto successfully until her retirement in August of 2014.
At that point, Caroline contacted Jeff Matt, owner of Victory Automotive, who was operating five successful Minnesota auto repair locations. Caroline decided to sell the business effective August 25, 2014 to Jeff. Victory’s expansion to Florida was based on Jeff’s desire to expand Victory’s reach and reputation to the Gulf Coast of Florida.
When Victory Auto took over operations, the Wilsey Clock was in place, but inoperable. Since 2014, the clock has been removed and fully restored.
Today, Victory Auto prides itself with providing honest, dependable service, and is one of the only AAA Approved auto repair shops in St. Petersburg.
Some of those who will be in attendance at the ribbon-cutting ceremony will be Rick Kriseman (Mayor of St. Petersburg), Chris Steinocher (St. Petersburg Chamber of Commerce President and CEO), Chamber of Commerce Ambassadors, Eric M. (Victory Automotive Location Manager),
Jeff Matt (Victory Automotive Owner), and Caroline Spencer-Jacobs (Previous Wilsey Auto Owner).
For more information or for an interview, please contact Jeff Matt, president of Victory Automotive Service, at 763-300-2541 or at [email protected]