Newton Teams finish 1-2

Ron Downing, Professor of Automotive Technology at Pittsburg State University and Ford/AAA Student Auto Skills Competition Manager, going over pre-competition rules this morning at the Kansas Speedway

Ron Downing, Professor of Automotive Technology at Pittsburg State University and Ford/AAA Student Auto Skills Competition Manager, going over pre-competition rules this morning at the Kansas Speedway

Newton Teams finish 1-2 in Kansas Student Auto Skills Contest; Washburn Tech team takes 3rd place

Kansas City, KS May 10, 2012 – A team from Newton, KS earned the title of Kansas’ top high school auto technicians after winning the Ford/AAA Student Auto Skills Kansas State Finals today. Led by their instructor Robert Ziegler, Kenton Bliss and Titus Minkevitch will go on to represent Kansas in the National Finals this summer against other state titleholders from across the country. They also won the trophy for the High (written) Exam Score in Kansas. Another Newton team finished second. The team of Dylan Stewart and Dakota Dennett were instructed by Cory Unruh. Unruh won back-to-back Kansas state contests the last two years and his team went on to win the national competition last year. Finishing third was a team from Washburn Tech Institute in Topeka.

As the first place Newton team, Bliss and Minkevitch won scholarships valued at more than $40,000 each to automotive programs across the country, including the Ford ASSET program. The second place Newton team of Stewart and Dennett were each awarded scholarship offers totaling nearly $21,000, while the third place from Washburn Tech in Topeka, comprised of Brant Morris and Corey Logan, Instructed by Robert Oswald, were each awarded more nearly $15,000 in advanced training scholarships.

As the automotive technologies evolve, AAA understands the need for bright young minds to enter the industry,” said James R. Hanni, AAA Kansas spokesman. “We are honored to help promote the automotive education and training of aspiring technicians through this annual competition,” Hanni said.

The results of the 2013 competition are as follows:

Place High School

City

Instructor Students
1st Newton High School Newton Robert Ziegler Kenton BlissTitus Minkevitch
2nd Newton High School Newton Cory Unruh Dylan StewartDakota Dennett
3rd Washburn Tech Institute Topeka Robert Oswald Brant MorrisCorey Logan
4th Herington High School Herington Jim Blackwell Trevor MuellerDillon Haggerty
5th Coffeyville Comm. College Columbus Jeff Phillips Andy GreenSkyler Gurnee
6th Washburn Tech Institute Topeka Darrin Dillingham Ryan PetitDustin Weber
7th Douglas High School Douglass Brandon Bellesine Derek LarsonJosh Monteith
8th Mill Creek Center Olathe Ken Gandy Mario De La O GarciaJosh Adams
9th Mill Creek Center Olathe Ed Hensley Christian StoneDurron McDaniel
10th Fort Scott High School Ft. Scott Ryan Miller Dale SavageDakota Crumby

Bliss and Minkevitch, and their instructor Robert Ziegler, will travel to Dearborn, Mich., to compete in the Ford/AAA Student Auto Skills National Finals, June 9-11 on the front lawn of Ford World Headquarters. At the National Finals, Bliss and Minkevitch will compete for additional scholarship money and the chance to kick start their automotive careers with a job shadow experience with premier racing team Roush Fenway Racing.

The Ford/AAA Student Auto Skills nationwide automotive technology competition 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 nation compete for the chance to represent their school and state as part of a two-person team in the National Finals.