Skills Canada nationals is designed to stretch competitors’ abilities. That’s exactly what happened to Yellowknife’s Reece Pineo on Tuesday morning.
Working on an Audi sedan, he was tasked with removing a rear shock and a front lower control arm. The latter was an entirely new experience for him, and he said it was one of the most difficult jobs that he’s faced. The rules don’t allow judges or supervisors to show competitors how to complete assignments. However, there is an iPad available that gives access to online shop manuals, so Pineo consulted that.
He’ll rotate through six stations with various duties — such as inspecting the suspension and steering — and he has two hours to finish what’s asked of him.
A Grade 12 student at Sir John Franklin High School, Pineo has been taking mechanics classes since Grade 9. He also landed a job at Aurora Ford, replacing tires. Outside of that, he estimates he’s worked on close to 30 vehicles over the years. Not too many of them have been Audis.
“German vehicles are usually more electrical and more difficult to deal with compared to American,” Pineo said, adding that newer models in general are more challenging due to the numerous automated components.
Although Pineo enjoys auto mechanics, he’s still contemplating whether his future profession will involve working on cars or welding, which he also enjoys, he said.