November 26, 2020

Heard High School “Hot Rodders” Chosen for Best in Class Challenge

(Houston, TX) — Quaker State® is bringing a hands-on automotive education program to select high schools through the “Best in Class Challenge.”

This 6-week competition will feature high school auto shop classes across the United States restoring, tuning and customizing a pre-owned car into a showroom-ready, creative representation of their school.

Each high school team will compete for not only bragging rights, but a custom spread in Popular Mechanics, the opportunity to attend and participate in the December 11, 2015 Mecum Auction in Austin, Texas and prize money and scholarships for their high school.

The “Heard High Hot Rodders” from Heard County High School have been selected as one of six semi-finalists from the Atlanta area.

“The Best in Class Challenge is an exciting opportunity for high school students, offering them the opportunity to learn and apply new techniques for automobile maintenance and care,” said Gita Gidwani, Quaker State Global Brand Manager.

“The competition will be a true test of automotive knowledge and attention to detail for the students, and we hope it builds on their passion for the industry.”

Beginning on September 14, 2015, approximately 27 schools from across the U.S. will compete to be nominated for the “Best in Class Challenge” and will have until September 27 to secure as many votes as possible.

The five school auto shop teams, one from each market, with the most votes will then become finalists and will take part in the next stage of the competition, transpiring over six weeks with a different automotive challenge each week beginning October 12, 2015.

Quaker State has also teamed up with AutoZone to help set up each school with the tools for success. The top five schools will receive their vehicle from local car lots (valued at $3,000), receive a $2,000 AutoZone gift card to purchase all necessary parts and supplies for the competition.

Over the next few weeks, the students will be scored on their progress, quality of work and overall final product. Online voting will also be taken into consideration.

Quaker State has chosen two distinguished judges: Tommy Pike, owner of Tommy Pike Customs, and Paul Menard, driver of the No. 27 Quaker State-Menards Chevrolet SS who races in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series. The judges will evaluate each team based on strict automotive criteria including engine presentation, cabin detailing and exterior finish.

“Being able to judge the ‘Best in Class Challenge’ is a huge honor,” said Tommy Pike. “My love for custom automobiles started at a young age, so I hope to inspire these students. I wish I had an opportunity like this when I was getting started.”

Upon successful completion of the “Best in Class Challenge,” all schools will be awarded a prize package from AutoZone that includes:

  • Gold Prize – one – $2,000 AutoZone Gift Certificate to the 1st place school

  • Silver Prize – two – $1,500 AutoZone Gift Certificate each to the 2nd and 3rd place schools

  • Bronze Prize – two – $1,000 AutoZone Gift Certificate each to the 4th and 5th place schools

In addition, all five schools will receive a professional mechanics tool kit from AutoZone for their shop class to further learn about auto maintenance.

All members of the winning auto shop team will be awarded the Grand Prize—a custom advertorial in Popular Mechanics to spread the word about their hard work and automotive skill.

The top three finalist teams will be given the chance to attend the Mecum Auction in Austin, Texas on December 11, 2015.

Additionally, the attending students will be on stage while the vehicle crosses the block along with Tommy Pike and Paul Menard.

The top three finalist teams will each have an opportunity to auction off their customized vehicles to the highest bidders with proceeds going to their high schools. The bottom two finalist teams will be able to keep their vehicles as a prize.

“Heard High Hot Rodder” fans can show support for Heard High School’s next generation of auto mechanics by casting votes at Remember to share with all your friends and family and voting is limited to only one vote per person!

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