Posts Tagged ‘NASCAR’

Ginnie PritchettTop auto students from across the country compete in the 64th annual Ford/AAA Student Auto Skills competition for the national title and millions of dollars in scholarships

ORLANDO, Fla., (June 5, 2013) – One hundred of the nation’s best young automotive minds will converge on the Motor City to compete for the title of top high school technicians in the country at the 64th Ford/AAA Student Auto Skills Competition National Finals June 9–11.  With jobs in the auto industry on the rise, up over 30 percent since last April according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the Ford/AAA Student Auto Skills challenge serves as a springboard for students to launch their careers.

This year’s young auto champions will be crowned June 11 at Ford Motor Company’s World Headquarters in Dearborn, Mich. from a field that includes 48 male and two female students. The annual competition features top high school automotive technology students from all 50 states, with each state represented by a two-student team and their high school instructor. At the National Finals, the students will have their automotive skills and knowledge put to the test with a written exam and a timed event in which they race against the clock and each other to identify glitches and repair deliberately-installed “bugs” in identical 2013 Ford Explorer XLTs. The team with the best combined written and hands-on score will win the national championship.

The road to Dearborn began in January when nearly 13,000 high school juniors and seniors took an online exam testing their automotive technology knowledge, and will culminate with one team taking home the title of national champion. In addition to scholarships and prizes, this year’s national champions will earn a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to gain hands-on experience through a weeklong job shadow experience with auto racing royalty, Wood Brothers Racing’s legendary21 Motorcraft/Quick Lane Ford Fusion team and 2011 Daytona 500 Winner Trevor Bayne leading up to and during the Coke Zero 400 in Daytona Beach, Fla. this July. For these two auto student national champions and their instructor, this extraordinary job shadow experience extends from a high-tech performance garage in North Carolina to the world-famous Daytona International Speedway. It includes the following:

  • Immersion of the winning students into the Wood Brothers Racing team as these expert auto technicians prepare for one the biggest events on the Sprint Cup Series calendar – the Coke Zero 400 at Daytona International Speedway on July 6
  • Serving as honorary pit crew members on the No. 21 Motorcraft/Quick Lane Ford Fusion under the guidance of Crew Chief Donnie Wingo
  • Mentoring by No. 21 driver Trevor Bayne at both the Wood Brothers Racing shop in Harrisburg, North Carolina and also trackside at Daytona

“Each week, me and the other drivers get all the attention on the track,” said Bayne, “But really, we couldn’t even get out there and run without our crew.  These guys I work with are the best in the business.  It’s pretty amazing what they do and how they work all week long to keep that No. 21 Motorcraft/Quick Lane car in top condition for me.

“The Ford/AAA Student Auto Skills Competition is a great opportunity for thousands of students across the country who really love working on cars and want to get into the industry.  I’m pretty excited to see these National Champions because really, this will help them see they may be young but they can work on the world’s best cars themselves. And hey, who knows, I could end up seeing these students on our pit crew one day!”

Founded in 1950, Wood Brothers Racing is the oldest active team in NASCAR. The Wood Brothers have won 14 Sprint Cup Series races at Daytona International Speedway, more than any other team in the sport. The Wood Brothers’ most recent trip to victory lane came at the 2011 Daytona 500, when then 20-year-old  Bayne become the youngest driver ever to win NASCAR’s most prestigious race.

As cars continue to become more advanced, Ford is leading the way with new technologies such as all-electric vehicles, adaptive cruise control, collision warning with brake assist, hands-free entertainment and communication systems. Understanding the mechanics behind these technologies is essential to the future of the automotive industry, the Ford/AAA Student Auto Skills challenge focuses on technological practices, while educating the next generation of technicians in traditional mechanical principles so they will be able to understand and on new vehicles.

Ford/AAA Student Auto Skills enables many of its participants to embark on promising careers in the automotive repair industry to help fuel the rising demand for well-trained technicians that can repair both computer and mechanical components in today’s advanced vehicles.  Both the national and the state-wide competitions are organized with the support of AAA and Ford personnel, local automotive instructors and the AAA Approved Auto Repair program, a public service AAA performs to identify quality repair facilities throughout the country. The competition awards nearly $12 million in scholarships to thousands of high school auto students each year, including the national title winners, allowing them to further their education in this rapidly changing industry.

About Ford/AAA Student Auto Skills

The Ford/AAA Student Auto Skills is a nationwide automotive technology competition that offers nearly $12 million in scholarships and prizes to high school juniors and seniors interested in pursuing careers as automotive service technicians.  More than 13,000 students from across the U.S. compete for the chance to represent their school and state in the National Finals. The competition tests students’ automotive knowledge, workmanship and problem-solving abilities. For additional information on the competition, visit http://autoskills.aaa.com/.

About Ford Motor Company

Ford Motor Company, a global automotive industry leader based in Dearborn, Mich., manufactures or distributes automobiles across six continents. With about 175,000 employees and 65 plants worldwide, the company’s automotive brands include Ford and Lincoln. The company provides financial services through Ford Motor Credit Company. For more information regarding Ford and its products worldwide, please visit http://corporate.ford.com.

Ginnie PritchettHigh school students across America compete for the opportunity to represent their state in the 64th Annual Ford/AAA Student Auto Skills Challenge

ORLANDO, Fla. (April 2, 2013) – The nation’s best young automotive minds  from coast-to-coast are gearing up for the 2013 Ford/AAA Student Auto Skills Challenge State Hands-On competitions, which kick off Tuesday, April 16 with an event in Jackson, Miss.

Competitions continue across the country through May 14, with the top team from each state advancing to the national finals at Ford World Headquarters in Dearborn, Michigan June 9 – 11. At the national finals, champions from all 50 states will compete against one another for the right to call themselves the top young auto technicians in America and take home millions of dollars in scholarships.

Below are the dates and locations of all 50 2013 FORD AAA State Hands-On Competitions:

Jackson, Miss.  – Tuesday, April 16

Birmingham, Ala. – Tuesday, April 17

Lexington, Ky. – Wednesday, April 17

Alexandria, La. – Thursday, April 18

Sioux Falls, S.D. – Thursday, April 18

Sanford, Fla. – Friday, April 19

Pearl City, Hawaii – Saturday, April 20

Warren, Mich. – Wednesday, April 24

Warminster, Pa. – Wednesday, April 24

Milford, Neb. – Thursday, April 25

Okmulgee, Okla. – Thursday, April 25

Anchorage, Alaska – Friday, April 26

Little Rock, Ark. – Friday, April 26

Atlanta, Ga. – Friday, April 26

Indianapolis, Ind. – Friday, April 26

La Porte, Texas – Friday, April, 26

Baltimore, Md. – Saturday, April 27

Brooklyn Park, Minn. – Wednesday, May 1

Atco, N.J. – Wednesday, May 1

Bridgeport, W.Va. – Wednesday, May 1

Helena, Mont. – Thursday, May 2

Nashville, Tenn. – Thursday, May 2

Sandy, Utah – Thursday, May 2

Warwick, R.I. – Thursday, May 2

Cheyenne, Wyo. – Thursday, May 2

Glendale, Ariz. – Friday, May 3

Danville, Calif. – Friday, May 3

Pomona, Calif. – Friday, May 3

Nampa, Idaho – Friday, May 3

Charlotte, N.C./S.C. – Saturday, May 4

Albuquerque, N.M. – Saturday, May 4

Virginia Beach, Va. – Saturday, May 4

Renton, Wash. – Tuesday, May 7

Ankeny, Iowa – Tuesday, May 7

Dover, Del. – Wednesday, May 8

Norwood, Mass. – Wednesday, May 8

Mequon, Wis. – Wednesday, May 8

North Haven, Conn. – Thursday, May 9

Sparks, Nev. – Thursday, May 9

Fargo, N.D. – Thursday, May 9

Kansas City, Mo./Kan. – Thursday, May 9

Toledo, Ohio – Friday, May 10

Champaign, Ill. – Friday, May 10

Gresham, Ore. – Friday, May 10

Denver, Colo. – Saturday, May 11

Epping, N.H./Maine/Vt. – Saturday, May 11

Morrisville, N.Y. – Tuesday, May 14

At the State Hands-On Competition, teams will race against the clock to correctly diagnose and repair a deliberately “bugged” 2013 Ford Focus SE. A combination of the online written exam and hands-on competition scores determine each state’s championship team that will compete in the national finals. For additional details on 2013 State Hands-On Competition locations and dates, visit Autoskills.AAA.com.

The Ford/AAA Student Auto Skills Competition is open to 11th and 12th grade students in secondary schools and colleges across the country that offer courses in automotive technology. Schools may enter one two-student team per instructor. Teams competing in the State Hands-On Competitions represent the 10 teams that scored highest on a statewide online written exam, administered at the beginning of the competition in January.

The Ford/AAA Student Auto Skills competition enables many of its participants to embark on promising careers in the automotive repair industry to help fuel the rising demand for well-trained technicians that can repair both computer and mechanical components in today’s advanced vehicles.  Both the national and the state-wide competitions are organized with the support of AAA and Ford personnel, local automotive instructors and the AAA Approved Auto Repair program, a free public service AAA performs to identify quality repair facilities throughout the country.

About Ford/AAA Student Auto Skills

The Ford/AAA Student Auto Skills is a nationwide automotive technology competition that offers millions in scholarships and prizes to high school juniors and seniors interested in pursuing careers as automotive service technicians.  More than 13,000 students from across the U.S. compete for the chance to represent their school and state in the National Finals. The competition tests students’ automotive knowledge, workmanship and problem-solving abilities. For additional information on the competition, visit http://autoskills.aaa.com/.

Ford/AAA Student Auto Skills participants to compete in National Finals; Champs will receive hands-on experience with NASCAR’s longest-tenured team

ORLANDO, Fla., (June 6, 2012) –  One hundred of the nation’s best young automotive technicians will compete in the Ford/AAA Student Auto Skills Competition National Finals June 10–12, with the championship student team earning a weeklong job shadow experience with auto racing royalty – former Daytona 500 winner Trevor Bayne and his Wood Brothers Racing team.

Working underneath of the hood of the Daytona 500 champion’s car isn’t the only benefit coming their way: the famed Ford/AAA Student Auto Skills competition, now in its 63rd year, awards nearly $12 million in scholarships to thousands of high school auto students each year, including the national title winners.

This year’s young auto kings will be crowned June 12 at Ford World Headquarters in Dearborn, Mich. The annual competition features top high school automotive technology students from all 50 states, with each state represented by a two-student team and their high school instructor. At the National Finals, the students will have their automotive skills and knowledge put to the test with a written exam and a timed event in which they will race against the clock and each other to identify glitches and repair deliberately-installed “bugs” in identical 2012 Ford Fiestas. The team with the best combined written and hands-on score will win the national championship.

The road to Dearborn began in February when nearly 13,000 high school juniors and seniors took an online exam testing their automotive technology knowledge. The 2012 edition of the Ford/Auto Skills Competition has already set several milestones, including a record number of students, instructors and schools participating, as well as the highest number of female competitors in event history.

For the national title winners, shadowing Wood Brothers Racing’s legendary 21 Motorcraft/Quick Lane Ford Fusion team leading up to and during the Coke Zero 400 in Daytona Beach, Fla. will be particularly significant – it’s the site of Trevor Bayne’s spectacular burst into racing stardom when he won the 2011 Daytona 500 at the age of 20. For these two auto student national champions and their instructor, this extraordinary job shadow experience extends from a high-tech performance garage in North Carolina to the world-famous Daytona International Speedway. It promises the following:

  • Immersion of the winning students into the Wood Brothers Racing team as these expert auto technicians prepare for one the biggest events on the Sprint Cup Series calendar – the Coke Zero 400 at Daytona International Speedway on July 7
  • Serving as honorary pit crew members on the No. 21 Motorcraft/Quick Lane Ford Fusion under the guidance of Crew Chief Donnie Wingo
  • Mentoring by No. 21 driver Trevor Bayne at both the Wood Brothers Racing shop in Harrisburg, North Carolina and also trackside at Daytona

“I was twenty years old when my wildest dreams came true in Victory Lane at last year’s Daytona 500,” said Bayne. “By shadowing me and Wood Brothers Racing as we prepare to race again at Daytona, I want the national winners of the 2012 Ford/AAA Student Auto Skills Competition to see that their dreams are obtainable as they work on the world’s best cars.”

Founded in 1950, Wood Brothers Racing is the oldest active team in NASCAR. The Wood Brothers have won 14 Sprint Cup Series races at Daytona International Speedway, more than any other team in the sport. The Wood Brothers’ most recent trip to victory lane came at the 2011 Daytona 500, when then 20-year-old  Bayne become the youngest driver ever to win NASCAR’s most prestigious race.

Ford/AAA Student Auto Skills enables many of its participants to embark on promising careers in the automotive repair industry to help fuel the rising demand for well-trained technicians that can repair both computer and mechanical components in today’s advanced vehicles.  Both the national and the state-wide competitions are organized with the support of AAA and Ford personnel, local automotive instructors and the AAA Approved Auto Repair program, a free public service AAA performs to identify quality repair facilities throughout the country.

About Ford/AAA Student Auto Skills

The Ford/AAA Student Auto Skills is a nationwide automotive technology competition that offers nearly $12 million in scholarships and prizes to high school juniors and seniors interested in pursuing careers as automotive service technicians.  More than 12,500 students from across the U.S. compete for the chance to represent their school and state in the National Finals. The competition tests students’ automotive knowledge, workmanship and problem-solving abilities. For additional information on the competition, visit http://autoskills.aaa.com/.

DEARBORN, MICHIGAN,  – June 15, 2010

61st annual auto repair showdown pitted top high school teams from all 50 states, awarded $11.5 million in scholarships

Christie HydeIn a face-off between the nation’s top high school automotive technology students, the two-person team from Valley City, N.D., emerged as the “best of the best” at the 61st annual Ford/AAA Student Auto Skills National Finals held today on the front lawn at Ford World Headquarters. The competition gives auto tech students the opportunity to showcase their automotive problem-solving capabilities by resolving “real world” repair challenges in a timed, head-to-head match-up of top teams representing all 50 states.

Jonathan Anderson, 18, and McKenzie Nordland, 17, from Sheyenne Valley Area Career & Technology Center bested the elite field of teams representing each state, as they recorded the day’s top score under the tutelage of instructor James McFagden.

Following a shotgun start, all teams raced to repair their assigned vehicle. Each two-student team used their collective top-level knowledge and workmanship to diagnose and properly repair “bugs”—purposefully placed mechanical and electrical problems within the vehicle. Teams that effectively repaired all of the planted “bugs” could shut the hood, start the engine and steer their vehicle through the finish line—where a judging team awaited to scrutinize their work.

Teams were tasked with diagnosing and repairing twelve “bugs” (which ranged from blown horn fuse, wiper switch malfunction and burnt out brake bulbs). North Dakota was the lone school to earn a “perfect car” score by flawlessly repairing all dozen “bugs” without any demerits for poor workmanship. To earn the National Title, the time it took to repair the vehicle was combined with the results of a 100-question written exam the students took the previous day. North Dakota hoisted the championship trophy after shutting the hood of their “perfect car” at 61 minutes and 30 seconds.

This year’s competition awarded a record-high $11.5 million in scholarships to the participants, which was comprised of more than 10,500 juniors and seniors. In March, following an online exam, the highest-scorers advanced to their states’ hands-on competition, with the top teams from each state competing in the National Finals.

In addition to the scholarships, in July, the winning students will job shadow the No. 16 Roush Fenway Racing Con-way Freight race team leading up to the NASCAR race at O’Reilly Raceway Park in Indianapolis. While there, the students will get at-track tutoring by Larry McReynolds, one of the sport’s most recognized crew chiefs and this year’s national spokesperson for the Ford/AAA Auto Skills competition.

Texas finished as the runner-up, followed by schools from Connecticut, South Carolina and Oregon that rounded out the top 5. (See below for a complete listing of the top-10 finishing order).

“Technology advances in today’s automobiles demands that our country is stocked with the next generation of auto professionals that are as technically savvy as they are mechanically inclined. We saw 100 of the very best and brightest automotive technicians on display today,” said John Nielsen, AAA National Director of Auto Repair and Buying Services. “From coast to coast, each state has some immensely talented students that showed their skill and expertise in a time-crunched, competitive environment that brought out their very best.”

At the National Finals, the top-10 teams received additional full and partial scholarships from some of the leading automotive technology institutions in the country, including Lincoln College of Technology, Universal Technical Institute, University of Northwestern Ohio, Ohio Technical College and WyoTech.

“As Ford vehicles of today continue to increase in technology and advanced features, auto technicians must be well-educated and highly-skilled to meet these increasing advancements,” said Frederiek Toney, Vice President of Ford’s Customer Service Division. “Ford is committed to training and retaining the best technicians in the industry and we are very proud of our continued involvement in this valuable competition, which is investing in our highly-skilled technicians of tomorrow.”

The Ford/AAA Auto Skills competition began in 1949 when Harry Truman was in office. This year, AAA marks its 26th year with the competition, serving as a co-sponsor since 1984. Ford Motor Company celebrates its 16th year involved in the competition.

The top-10 teams in the 2010 Ford/AAA Student Auto Skills National Finals were:

1 North Dakota (Jonathan Anderson and McKenzie Nordland) Sheyenne Valley Area & Technology Center, Valley City, N.D., Instructor James McFagden

2 Texas (Ian Dunaway and Jesse Hackfield) Birdville Center of Technology & Advanced Learning, North Richland Hills, Texas, Instructor Olin Harrington

3 Connecticut (Jordan Boots and Conner McCreery) Platt Technical High School, Milford, Conn., Instructor Kirk Stankiewicz

4 South Carolina (Adam Hale and Taylor Wise) B.J. Skelton Career Center, Easley, S.C., Instructor Phillip Smith

5 Oregon (Steven Tolman and Nathan Maupin) Vale High School, Vale, Ore., Instructor Merle Sanders

6 Kansas (Ernest Sharp and Ian Clark) Newton High School, Newton, Kan., Instructor Cory Unruh

7 Rhode Island (Richard Wilkins and Patrick Hickey) Warwick Area Career and Technical Center, Warwick, R.I., Instructor David Tibbetts

8 Washington (Richard Harvey and Benjamin Quesnell) Tri-Tech Skills Center, Kennewick, Wash., Instructor Larry Brookes

9 Hawaii (Bryson Higa and Lewis Drapete) Maui High School, Kahului, Hawaii, Instructor Shannon Rowe

10 Michigan (Andrew Michaluk and Ryan Hastings) Saline High School, Saline, Mich., Instructor Tim Timoszyk

Ford/AAA Student Auto Skills is a nationwide automotive technology competition for high school juniors and seniors interested in pursuing careers as automotive service technicians. This year marks the 61st anniversary of the competition that tests students’ automotive knowledge, workmanship and problem-solving abilities with a written test as well as a race against the clock to diagnose and properly repair intentionally “bugged” vehicles. Ford and AAA are dedicated to the competition as part of their commitment to the future of automotive service in America. For information on competing in the Ford/AAA Student Auto Skills, visit AutoSkills.com.

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