Team Moroso, from Eastern Oklahoma County Technology Center in Choctaw, Okla., defeated 22 other schools from across the nation to win the Hot Rodders of Tomorrow National Championship recently at the PRI Trade Show in Indianapolis.
School instructor Jim LaFevers tutored a six-student group that broke the event’s national record in breaking down and then re-assembling a V8 engine in 18 minutes, 43 seconds. The team was composed of Callie Hunter, Ryan Campbell, Alexander Versteeg, Connor Hixenbaugh, Connor Carrizales and Nicholas Brown.
“This is an opportunity of a life-time for these kids and something they’ll remember for the rest of their lives to become national champions,“ said LaFevers, whose school is made up from students from four local feeder high schools. “This is a jumpstart for their career in the automotive and high-performance trade. The Hot Rodders of Tomorrow have a terrific program.”
In total, 23 schools from around the nation qualified for the event at regional competitions. This year’s Hot Rodders of Tomorrow National Championships saw schools qualify from California to Virginia.
“We had a really exciting time – PRI was a perfect host and we absolutely loved being here,” said Rodney Bingham of Hot Rodders of Tomorrow. “The kids did an amazing job and our program offers more than $2 million in scholarships. No student here will get less than $15,000 worth of scholarships and some will receive more than $30,000 per student.”
This was the first time that the championship was held during the PRI show, and they were happy to be able to showcase the event during a week-long flurry of activities that was attended by more than 40,000 racing industry professionals.
“We were excited to have the Hot Rodders of Tomorrow join us at the PRI Trade Show,” said John Kilroy, producer of the PRI Trade Show. “It’s a very powerful program to give young people entrance to the performance and racing world. They are the future of our sport and I wouldn’t be surprised if some of the companies attending the show had an eye out for their next generation of engine builders.”