It's a grueling two-day, hands-on technical skills challenge that pits dealership technicians from around the country against each other in a battle that tests all aspects of their mechanical know-how — and only three can win.
The Yamaha U.S. Technician Grand Prix puts techs in situations where they must diagnose typical customer complaints and running-performance problems. The contest incorporates precision measuring, fuel injection and electrical troubleshooting, customer interview skills, and service information gathering.
The final rounds of the USTGP were held in June at Yamaha's Southeastern headquarters in Kennesaw, Ga. Three finalists went neck-and-neck to decide who are the top Yamaha technicians in the country. And the winners were:
First place - Mark Sagers (South Valley Motorsports Draper, Utah)
Second place - Ken Matlock (Watts Yamaha Lubbock, Texas)
Third place - Mike Durrah (Central Coast Yamaha Santa Maria, Calif.)
The contestants were graded by Yamaha Technical Training staff on several factors — approach to the problem, use of tools and test equipment, attitude, work habits and final diagnosis of the problem.
After the competition the three finalists were escorted to the Barber Motorsports Park and the Vintage Motorsports Museum in Birmingham, Ala., for a private tour of the facilities and the awards ceremony where the final results were announced.