Saturday, June 23 , 2018, 1:23 am | Fog/Mist 60º


Lompoc Students Place Third in State at Auto Skills Competition

Teammates Josh Tainowitz and Alberto Vasquez showed their knack for finding and repairing 'bugs' planted in vehicles.

Lompoc High School students Josh Tainowitz and Alberto Vasquez, members of the Santa Barbara County Education Office ROP Advanced Auto class, placed third in the state at the Ford/AAA Students Auto Skills Competition in Irwindale on May 8-9.

The timed event required each school’s two-person team to find and repair “bugs” planted in vehicles. The 22 teams were allowed 90 minutes to diagnose and correct any problems. Teams won according to the speed in which they correctly made all of the repairs.

To qualify for the competition, students from across California took an online test, and each school’s two highest student scores were combined. The top 10 Southern California schools sent teams to Irwindale to compete at the Irwindale Raceway, while a simultaneous competition was being held with the top 10 schools in northern California.

The Lompoc students prepared for the competition with ROP Advanced Auto instructor Mike Johnson at Vreeland Ford in Buellton. Johnson has been an active supporter in preparing students for the event for many years. The dealership donates a vehicle, which is then bugged for the students to develop their skills for the timed event.

The first day of the two-day event included a tour of the Wally Parks NHRA Museum, and a coat-and-tie dinner with guest speakers Robert Height and Ashley Force, both funny car drivers.

The Advanced Auto course at Lompoc High School is part of the Regional Occupational Program. It is one of a group of courses offered through the Santa Barbara County Educational Office to provide high school students and adults with occupational skills to be competitive in the employment market and prepared advanced career training.

For more information about ROP, call 805.937.8427.

Tracey Beauchamp is a communications coordinator for the Santa Barbara County Education Office.

Support Noozhawk Today

You are an important ally in our mission to deliver clear, objective, high-quality professional news reporting for Santa Barbara, Goleta and the rest of Santa Barbara County. Join the Hawks Club today to help keep Noozhawk soaring.

We offer four membership levels: $5 a month, $10 a month, $25 a month or $1 a week. Payments can be made through PayPal below, or click here for information on recurring credit-card payments.

Thank you for your vital support.

Become a Noozhawk Supporter

First name
Last name
Enter your email
Select your membership level

Payment Information

You are purchasing:

Payment Method

Pay by Credit Card:

Mastercard, Visa, American Express, Discover

Pay with Apple Pay or Google Pay:

Noozhawk partners with Stripe to provide secure invoicing and payments processing.

  • Ask
  • Vote
  • Investigate
  • Answer

Noozhawk Asks: What’s Your Question?

Welcome to Noozhawk Asks, a new feature in which you ask the questions, you help decide what Noozhawk investigates, and you work with us to find the answers.

Here’s how it works: You share your questions with us in the nearby box. In some cases, we may work with you to find the answers. In others, we may ask you to vote on your top choices to help us narrow the scope. And we’ll be regularly asking you for your feedback on a specific issue or topic.

We also expect to work together with the reader who asked the winning questions to find the answer together. Noozhawk’s objective is to come at questions from a place of curiosity and openness, and we believe a transparent collaboration is the key to achieve it.

The results of our investigation will be published here in this Noozhawk Asks section. Once or twice a month, we plan to do a review of what was asked and answered.

Thanks for asking!

Click Here to Get Started >

Reader Comments

Noozhawk is no longer accepting reader comments on our articles. Click here for the announcement. Readers are instead invited to submit letters to the editor by emailing them to [email protected]. Please provide your full name and community, as well as contact information for verification purposes only.

Daily Noozhawk

Subscribe to Noozhawk's A.M. Report, our free e-Bulletin sent out every day at 4:15 a.m. with Noozhawk's top stories, hand-picked by the editors.

Sign Up Now >