Luke Harris

Luke Harris wins @Halfords_uk BTCC Apprentice of the Year 2021 competition to join @hondaracingbtcc as a team mechanic

 A 21-year-old apprentice from Newbury is ecstatic after winning a nail-biting shootout to become one of the top British Touring Car Championship racing team’s mechanics. 

Luke Harris, who is now in his third and final year of his Halfords Autocentres apprenticeship, will now join the Halfords Racing with Cataclean BTCC touring car team each weekend to ensure the 350 bhp Honda Civic Type R BTCC race car is ready to hit the track. 

The Halfords BTCC Apprentice of the Year competition, which took place at the team’s headquarters in Droitwich, saw nine Halfords Autocentres apprentices from all over the country battling it out to win the coveted job with the BTCC team.

The apprentices faced a rigorous practical assessment to identify twelve faults on a performance road car in a racing scenario, followed by a tough interview with team bosses James Rodgers, Steve Thomas and Andy Turbefield from Halfords Autocentres. 

Luke was crowned the winner after coming out on top, with team boss James Rodgers saying that Luke performed best overall on the practical assessment as well as impressing the judges in the interview. 

Luke, who has been a Halfords Autocentres apprentice for three years, said: “The day went great, I was a bit nervous but think I got through the tests well. I’m very excited to be part of the race team, I’m looking forward to working with the drivers and the mechanics and seeing what I do making an impact on the track.” 

He applied to be Halfords Autocentres apprentice by following a lifelong passion for cars. Luke explained that he has always been practical and could never imagine himself in an office. His passion for cars came from his grandad who loved taking him to car shows and is currently building his very own kit car. 

Halfords Autocentres managing director Andy Randall said: “I’m absolutely thrilled to announce Luke as the winner of the 2021 Halfords BTCC Apprentice of the Year competition. These apprentices have shown great courage, determination, and skill to reach this stage, and everyone who made the final should be very proud. Halfords is rapidly expanding its garage estate as it transforms into a service focused business and we need skilled and dedicated colleagues to make it a reality. These apprentices are the future of our business.” 

James Rodgers – Team Manager at Team Dynamics added “We don’t just choose the best candidates on their out and out scores; we look at who has the right attitude and personality to work in a high-pressure environment.   Luke scored well, but it was his overall character and demeanour that carried him through.  We know what great experience we can offer to each engineer and they can then go back and use what they have learnt in their own Autocentre.” 

Luke follows in the footsteps of 2019 winner Josh Hall and 2020 winner Jackie Hardey to become part of the Halfords Racing with Cataclean BTCC team, supporting them as they fight for the 2021 British Touring Car Championship.

 This year, three time BTCC champion Gordon Shedden and new driver Daniel Rowbottom will be behind the wheel with the first race taking place at Thruxton on the weekend 8-9 May. 



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