Teaching young dogs old tricks – Engen’s R150k vintage engine restoration challenge

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Engen, a leading supplier of fuels and lubricants to the agricultural sector, has issued a R150,000 challenge to budding young mechanics for the best restoration of a vintage engine to full operational status.


The company launched the competition in partnership with SAVTEC (the South African Federation of Vintage Tractors and Engine Clubs), expressing the hope that it will foster an appreciation for classic tractors and engines and the tools and techniques that went into building the crucial agricultural sector of the South African economy.


Competition rules

Through SAVTEC, the competition targets youth clubs, agricultural and technical schools, and agricultural colleges.


It covers two age groups (Juniors U/18 and Seniors 19-30 years old), competing for the combined R150,000 purse. Entries opened on 1 September and close in February 2016. Regional semi-finalists will be announced in April 2016. The winners will be crowned at the NAMPO Harvest Day in May 2016.


Refreshing competition

The competition is essentially a convergence of two movements, says Paul Leask, Engen’s sales manager of agricultural lubricants.


The first is the annual exhibition of vintage tractors and engines hosted jointly by Engen and SAVTEC at the Engen Museum at NAMPO for the past 35 years. These machines of bygone times have drawn much interest from the many keen enthusiasts who attend the event.


“The second  is to transfer and develop mechanical skills through the mentorship elements of the competition, and in the process to develop a culture favouring preservation of, and respect for, the vintage equipment used to develop the agriculture sector,” says Leask.


Long association

Engen has long maintained a keen agricultural focus, with one in every two South African farmers depending on the company’s quality products, local expertise and global technical excellence, says John Kennedy, Engen Lubricants Business Manager.


“This focus is evident in the company’s long-standing supply to the industry – beginning with oils for saddlery and grease for horse cart and wagon wheels in the 1880s, and culminating in products like Agritrac Super Universal and Engen Dynamic Diesel, with its advanced cleaning and restorative properties for diesel engines,” adds Kennedy.


Engen’s co-management of NAMPO with Grain SA, a partnership dating back to 1978, is modern testament to a commitment to the land for this African energy leader.


Good fit

The competition is a collaboration between Engen’s Commercial Fuels and Lubricants business.


“We are very excited to be involved in this fabulous initiative,” says Mike Stead, Engen Commercial Business Manager. “Engen’s association with vintage tractors and our support for youth skills development makes this a natural fit for us.”


Adds Leask: “There’s nothing quite as rewarding as passing on our knowledge to the youth that understands the responsibility of holding food security in their hands.”


Visit www.savtec.co.za and www.engen.co.za for more information.