Newton Teams finish 1-2 in Kansas Student Auto Skills Contest; Washburn Tech team takes 3rd place

By AAA Kansas
April 18, 2014

Two students from Newton High School, Derek Roach and Carson Voth, earned the title of Kansas’ top high school auto technicians after winning the Ford/AAA Student Auto Skills Kansas State Finals Thursday. Their instructor is Robert Ziegler.  They will represent Kansas in the National Finals against state titleholders from the other 49 states. They also won the trophy for the High (written) Exam Score in Kansas.  

Another team from Newton High School, comprised of David Albrecht and Arizona Creekmore, instructed by Cory Unruh, finished second.  Unruh won back-to-back Kansas state contests in 2011 and 2012 and his 2012 team went on to win the national competition.  Ziegler has now won back-to-back Kansas competitions and his 2013 team finished eighth at the national contest.  

Finishing third was a team from Topeka’s Washburn Technical Institute.  The Washburn Tech team of Michael Carr and Dylan Stauch was instructed by Robert Oswald.

As the first place Newton team, Voth and Roach won scholarships valued at over $26,000 each to automotive programs across the country, including the Ford ASSET training program. The second place Newton team of Albrecht and Creekmore were each awarded scholarship offers totaling 16,000, while the third place Washburn Tech team of Carr and Stauch were each awarded advanced training scholarships totaling over $9,000.  Each of the ten teams received scholarship offers.  Collectively, the ten teams that competed in the Kansas competition received scholarship offers of nearly $110,000 from technical colleges around the country and the top three teams received training scholarships from Ford Motor Company.

“As the automotive technologies evolve, AAA understands the need for bright young minds to enter the industry,” said James R. Hanni, AAA Kansas spokesman. “We are pleased to be involved in encouraging automotive education and training for aspiring technicians through this annual competition,” Hanni said.

The top ten results of the 2014 competition are as follows:

1st Place

Newton High School


Instructor: Robert Ziegler

Carson Voth

Derek Roach

2nd Place

Newton High School


Instructor: Cory Unruh

David Albrecht

Arizona Creekmore


Washburn Tech Institute


Instructor: Robert Oswald

Michael Carr

Dylan Stauch


Pittsburg High School


Instructor: Adam Nunn

William Capps

Marcous Fischer


Flint Hills Technology College


Instructor: Bret Pope

Michael Sigle

Dylan Meade


Olathe Advanced Technical Center


Instructor: Edward Hensley

Alec Jorns

Matthew McReynolds


Dighton High School


Instructor: Alan Berndt

Wyatt Habiger

Hunter Stanley


Wichita North High School


Instructor: Robert Allen

Jose Garcia

Alex Kimber


Wichita South High School


Instructor: Darin Culver

Alan Thomas

Austin Allmond


Flint Hills Technology College


Instructor: Robert Sieberns

Lane Ikerd

Levie Cole

Voth and Roach, along with their instructor Ziegler, will travel to Dearborn, Mich., to compete in the Ford/AAA Student Auto Skills National Finals, June 8-10 on the front lawn of Ford World Headquarters. At the National Finals, Voth and Roach will compete for additional scholarship money and the chance to kick start their automotive careers with a job shadow experience with premier racing team Roush Fenway Racing.

The Ford/AAA Student Auto Skills nationwide automotive technology competition offers nearly $12 million in scholarships and prizes to high school juniors and seniors interested in pursuing careers as automotive service technicians. More than 13,000 students from across the nation compete for the chance to represent their school and state as part of a two-person team in the National Finals.  The competition tests students’ automotive knowledge, workmanship and problem-solving abilities.