The IMI Skills Competitions aim to identify the most talented young apprentices working in the automotive sector. Last November the finalists came together to find out who would take home gold.  


In the Heavy Vehicle Technology category Ben Turner from Skillnet and Harris DAF in High Wycombe finished in the top spot. It was a defining moment in his career so far after deciding automotive was for him.

“As a kid I have always found an interest in cars and big diesel powered machinery. This interest continued and I found that heavy goods vehicles would be the best mix of all my interests,” says Turner.

“World Skills was great fun. It was nice to meet people with similar interests and skillsets. I found the competition to be engaging and it also gave me some pointers to reflect on to improve myself in the future. Taking home gold felt great. It was a huge relief and also gave me a chance to reflect on the amount of effort it took me to get here.”

The win has given him fresh impetus to take his career further and an eagerness to go one step further and represent the UK at international level.

“I would like my career to keep on progressing. Ideally I would like to be a Master Technician within the next couple of years and also looking to be on a mobile breakdown van. I’m also looking forward to the World Skills International competition when that goes ahead,” says Turner. Wherever his career takes him, Turner’s apprenticeship was the building block that’s allowed him to dream big.

“My apprenticeship was a great mix of learning and fun which really helped engage me throughout. The most interesting bit of the apprenticeship was of course learning about how the modern diesel engine works including the aftertreatment systems they include. The most challenging bit of my apprenticeship was towards the end when completing the standards assessment to pass my apprenticeship,” he says.

So what advice would he give to others starting their journey on the way to an automotive career?

“Have a lot of patience with it and slowly build up your skillset. There will be parts that are a struggle and it’s all about keeping calm and using a methodical thought process to work through problems.”


Time to find out more about the IMI Skills Competitions? See how you could be part of the search for the top talent in the sector

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