The hunt for the UK’s best young automotive apprentices will start on February 9, with the opening of online registrations for the 2015 Institute of the Motor Industry Skill Auto competition.
Young people will compete in the fields of autobody, autorefinishing and autotech for a place at the Skill Auto final, which takes place at the Skills Show in November.
An online test will decide who reaches the live heats. More than 75,000 young people visited the Skills Show at the NEC last year, where 18 automotive competitors competed in their chosen fields alongside apprentices from hundreds of different professions.
Dates for the Skill Auto live heats have already been confirmed with the competitions returning to three prestigious host venues:
• May 13 - 15 Autorefinishing, 3M, Atherstone
• June 3 - 5 Autobody, Eyebox, Coventry
• June 15 - 19 Autotech, Jaguar Land Rover Academy, Warwickshire
Additionally, the 2015 Skill Auto competition will be an integral part of WorldSkills squad selection for the first time. The competition has been adapted to meet the required standards and allow extra finalists to challenge for a place on the WorldSkills UK team, which will go to Abu Dhabi in 2017.
IMI competition manager Davie Massie said: “2014 was another successful year for the motor industry’s premier skills competition. Therefore it’s very exciting that our competition is now an integral part of WorldSkills squad selections for the first time. For this reason we have had to realign some of what we do and raise the standard significantly; something we were working towards anyway but certainly doesn’t come without its challenges. Ultimately it means the apprentices who take part in the competition will have more to fight for than ever in the highest profile Skill Auto to date.”
IMI are asking teaching staff and employers to direct talented apprentices to the online test at www.autocity.org.uk/skillauto. Online entry for the competition closes on the March 20.
Video highlights from the 2014 final