Motor Mech Show returns to Newton Tech

Hannes Crafford, head of the mechanical department at Newton Technical High School, judges one of the entrants, Athenkosi Makapela, during last year's Motor Mech Show hosted at the school
Hannes Crafford, head of the mechanical department at Newton Technical High School, judges one of the entrants, Athenkosi Makapela, during last year's Motor Mech Show hosted at the school
Image: SUPPLIED

The Motor Industry Workshop Association (Miwa) is firing on all cylinders ahead of the Motor Mech Show later this month.

After the success of last year’s inaugural event, Miwa have again partnered with Newton Technical High School to help expand mechanical and motoring opportunities for interested school leavers.

Beyond the excitement of Classic Cars, 4x4 and motorbike displays, event co-ordinators have collaborated with additional companies to broaden the possibilities for students.

One such co-ordinator, Bridget Finn, said despite the wet weather at last year’s event she was thrilled by the attendance.

She said the excitement from the public for an event of this nature was a personal highlight.

“It’s scary hosting an event for the first time, but when the workshop was so well received by the public the effort was all worth it,” Finn said.

2020’s show will include apprenticeship opportunities, body shops, car insurance companies along with a host of other exhibits related to the automotive sector.

Finn said those exhibiting hoped to expose matriculants of technical colleges and high schools to a spectrum of career gateways in the motor industry that is not often taught or presented in the classroom.

Hannes Crafford, 44, head of the mechanics department at Newton Technical High School, was impressed by the thorough preparation students underwent for last year’s competition.

He emphasised an event of this kind was an excellent space for students to network and demonstrate their skills in motor mechanics.

“Not only do those who participate in the competition have an opportunity to showcase their talent, but it serves as a rewarding stepping stone into their careers,” he said.

Crafford said when students received interviews with companies who exhibited at the Motor Mech Show, the students already had the advantage of having been  seen in action by potential employers.  

Of course much of the excitement for the Motor Mech Show is owed to the prizes in the mechanics competitions.

In what is arguably the highlight of the daylong event, aspiring mechanics from Newton Technical High School and Otto du Plessis High School will go wrench-to-wrench in the School Mechanic Competition and the Miwa Master Mechanic Competition.

The first place prize for the former includes R2,000 and a well-stocked toolset sponsored by the Motor Industry Staff Association.

The winner of the Miwa Master Mechanic Competition will benefit from a R5,000 cash prize and a tool box donated by Diesel Electric.

Gates for the workshop open at 9am on Saturday February 22. Tickets are R10 a person and all proceeds are invested into Newton Technical High School to continue to develop, promote and preserve technical education.

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