For the second year running, Fiat Auto UK’s Top Technician Competition has successfully taken place - the idea being to identify and reward the nation’s leading Fiat and Alfa Romeo Dealer Expert Technicians. Through a series of paper-based, online and practical assessments, the competition is designed to test both knowledge and skill, and to reward and recognise the top performers in the country.
All certified Fiat and Alfa Romeo DETs were invited to participate in the competition, by completing two assessments to test their technical knowledge. The top three performers for each marque were rewarded with a high value prize from a wide selection, including home cinema systems, digital cameras and MP3 players.
Scores from both assessments were combined to determine the top 20 finalists who qualified to compete in the Practical Finals. Taking place in two locations, in the north and south, the finals consisted of a series of problems and tasks for the technicians to overcome and complete. Finalists were specifically tested on their ability to comprehensively identify faults, clearly describe system operations, pay attention to detail and follow safety procedures.
The Practical Finals established the top 10 technicians, who were then invited to Parma in Italy to celebrate their achievement. Over the course of three days, winners experienced a true taste of Italy, visiting the Ferrari Museum in Modena, attending an Awards Ceremony, and enjoying a full day of thrills, spills and automobiles at the Varano de’ Melegari Race Circuit.
With access to a fleet of Alfa Romeos, the winners undertook a number of exhilarating challenges, including controlling a car in dangerous conditions, high speed laps, and crash simulations.
During the Awards Ceremony, the overall winners were announced as being:
- Top Fiat Technician 2005 - Mark Goodman
- Top Alfa Romeo Technician 2005 - Stuart Mackenzie
Jon Williams, Fiat Auto UK technical training manager, comments: "The Top Technician Competition 2005 was a resounding success, with even more interest and participation than last year. It’s great to see so many DETs keen to showcase their knowledge and skills in a competitive yet friendly arena. The trip to Italy was a fantastic way in which to reward the top performers for their achievements and commitment.
"A skilled and knowledgeable work-force is crucial to the success of any aftersales department, and witnessing such proficient technicians throughout this competition makes me feel extremely optimistic for the future of Fiat and Alfa Romeo."
Top 10 Technicians
- Mark Goodman - Desira, Norfolk
- Paul Dilena - Bishops, Guildford
- David Wallace - Arnold Clark, Dundee
- Jed Hill - Arnold Clark, Edinburgh
- Stuart Mackenzie - Arnold Clark, Perth
- Andy Collins - Lythgoe, Rochdale
- Michael Hale - Evans Halshaw, Horsforth
- Nigel Snape - Reg Vardy, Stockport
- Jamie Virdee - DBS Desira, Bury
- John Reilly - Desira, Great Yarmouth