Quaker State Awards 'Best in Class Challenge' to Jordan Vocational High School - Engine Builder Magazine

Quaker State Awards ‘Best in Class Challenge’ to Jordan Vocational High School

Quaker State has announced the top three winners from the “Best in Class Challenge,” a six-week automotive education program featuring high school auto shops from across the United States. This year's winner of the 1st Place Grand Prize were the Red Jackets from Jordan Vocational High School in Columbus, Georgia.
Jordan Vocational High School in Columbus, Georgia.
Jordan Vocational High School in Columbus, Georgia.

Quaker State has announced the top three winners from the “Best in Class Challenge,” a six-week automotive education program featuring high school auto shops from across the United States. As the winner of this year’s 1st Place Grand Prize, the Red Jackets from Jordan Vocational High School in Columbus, Georgia were awarded a $2,500 credit account at AutoZone, a customized tool kit ($500 value), a feature digital article on automotive websites and the opportunity to sell their vehicle at a Barrett-Jackson auction with proceeds being awarded back to their school. In addition, all finalists had the opportunity to receive mentorship from celebrity judges along the way.

Each participating school was awarded ownership of their customized vehicle from the competition along with credit accounts at their local AutoZone stores in the following amounts:

  • 2nd Place: Charles B. Aycock High School – Pikeville, North Carolina – $2,000
  • 3rd Place: Satellite High School – Satellite Beach, Florida – $1,500
  • 4th Place: Kearny High School – Kearny, New Jersey – $1,000
  • 5th Place: New Trier High School – Winnetka, Illinois – $750

“Quaker State believes in empowering the next generation of automotive technicians, and the ‘Best In Class Challenge’ is our special way of reaching out on a personal level to achieve just that,” explained Laura Jaime, Quaker State North American marketing manager. “For the second year in a row, these students have been put through the gauntlet of hands-on automotive exercises to get their vehicles into auction block shape. The hard work and creativity the students displayed throughout the six-week challenge was an inspiring glimpse into the future of our industry.”

Throughout the six weeks of competition, the five auto shop teams were tasked with a different challenge each week and were responsible for customizing, restoring, and fine-tuning a pre-owned Ford Mustang (valued at approximately $3,000) into a pristine, creative representation of their school. Each team was judged weekly on various automotive criteria that took into account before and after diagnostic testing results, interior and exterior customization work, general engine maintenance and overall creativity.

Competition judges and student mentors included Tommy Pike, owner of Tommy Pike Customs in Greenville, South Carolina and Mike Spagnola, vice president of OEM & Product Development Programs of SEMA. In addition, actor and car enthusiast Sung Kang participated in the “Best In Class Challenge” as an automotive mentor to the students.

“These teams pulled out all the stops this year to make their Ford Mustang stand out from the rest and represent their schools,” said Tommy Pike, an automotive customization expert with more than 15 years in the business. “Their eagerness to get under the hood and get their hands dirty reminds me a lot of myself at their age. I have to give so much credit to the instructors of these programs. The guidance, encouragement and training that they provide often goes unnoticed or unrecognized. The next generation of enthusiasts are dependent on these programs and it has been a privilege to partner with them and mentor these students.”

As part of their prize package, the Red Jackets from Jordan Vocational High School will attend the Barrett-Jackson auction in West Palm Beach, Florida on April 8, 2017. The students and their instructor, Robert Harris, will be with their customized vehicle when it is auctioned off to the highest bidder. The gross proceeds earned from the auction will be awarded back to the school as prize money.

“The Quaker State ‘Best in Class Challenge’ has been a life changing experience for me and my students. This competition is just what was needed for my students to see their potential. They are ready for more now,” shared Robert Harris, automotive instructor, Jordan Vocational High School. “The life lessons and relationships built would not have been possible without this opportunity. All of my students in the entire program have a bigger interest in cars now, not just the team.”

Starting in September 2016, approximately 55 semi-finalist schools were responsible for securing as many votes as possible to be nominated for the “Best in Class Challenge.” The team with the most votes from each of the five markets, one from each market (Chicago, Northern New Jersey, Atlanta, Orlando and Charlotte), then became finalists and moved on to compete in six weeks of automotive challenges.

You May Also Like

Registration Opens for 2024 PRI Show

Taking place December 12-14 at the Indiana Convention Center and Lucas Oil Stadium in Indianapolis, the 2024 PRI Show will feature over 1,000 exhibiting companies.

Registration for the 2024 PRI Show is now open at PRI2024.com/Attend. Taking place December 12-14 at the Indiana Convention Center and Lucas Oil Stadium in Indianapolis, the 2024 PRI Show will connect buyers with representatives from over 1,000 exhibiting companies who are eager to showcase their latest products, services, machinery, simulation and testing technologies, trailers, and more.  

Private Tour of Team Penske Fetches $27K at Auction

The top bidder and five guests receive a private two-hour “Behind the Scenes VIP Tour” of Team Penske with proceeds donated to the MSHFA.

Guillermo Santa Cruz Named President of Homestead-Miami Speedway

Santa Cruz takes over for long-time Homestead-Miami Speedway executive Al Garcia.

Building Plans Revealed for Lucas Oil Indianapolis Raceway Park

The plans include a new Wally Parks Tower, renovated suites, a new fan entrance, and moving the professional pits.

World of Outlaws Announces Finals Schedule

The World of Outlaws World Finals Championship weekend at The Dirt Track at Charlotte is set for Wednesday-Saturday, November 6-9.

Other Posts
A Custom Cosworth V10 Engine will go in Red Bull’s RB17 Hypercar

Only 50 examples of the RB17 will be produced, and it is the latest hypercar to feature a Cosworth engine.

Melling to Giveaway ‘Crew Member for a Day’ Experience

Coming off their Melling Supports Cars Show, Melling is now offering the chance to be an NHRA crew member for a day at the NHRA US Nationals.

John Force Leaves Hospital for Rehab Center

John Force has left VCU Medical Center for a rehab facility selected because of its success in treating other race car drivers with similar issues.

Lubrizol Additive Solutions for GF-7

Lubrizol’s additive solution to meet new performance requirements will enable oil marketers to upgrade to ILSAC GF-7 with ease.