“I was brought into this world around cars,” Matt explains. At the age of 7 or earlier, I was my dad’s official “tool fetcher.” I could identify all the tools he owned. The first vehicle he let me drive (at the age of 8) was a ’71 Chevelle. He challenged me to drive down our driveway and keep it between a power pole and a stump. I was so nervous, but successfully completed his challenge. My twin brother and I played in the dirt with our Hot Wheels cars most days. Dad let us play in his old junk cars, too. Our dad owned his own paint and body shop until I was 18. Matt worked alongside his dad, as they were continually tackling up to four projects at a time.
Matt worked for Malibu Boats for 2 ½ years, making final repairs on boats before they went out the door. If anything was broken, he fixed it.
Matt’s dad (Freddy Rouse) works at Atomic Speed Shop now. Matt was coming weekly to this shop with his dad and became “hooked” on the shop’s family-friendly environment and inquired about work for himself there. The Atomic Speed Shop hired Matt and they could not be more pleased. He is a “hands-on” learner, immediately mastering what is taught to him by other employees. His dad’s encouragement to get Matt back to what he knows he has always been comfortable with was the perfect fit.
Matt is now enjoying being able to build other people’s dreams in the car world. He is surrounded by experts to aid in this feat.
When asked about his own “dream,” he aspires to bringa 1987 Monte Carlo Aero Coupe up to showroom perfection. This car is presently his dad’s, but Matt hopes to inherit it one day. He is upgrading it now to his desired pristine conditions. It is stored in his basement.
Favorite Song: “Sand in My Boots” – Morgan Wallen
Favorite Movie: Gone in 60 Seconds
Favorite Car: 1987 Monte Carlo SS Aerocoupe
Favorite Color: Green