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Ashford-based mechanic Matthew Pestridge has come second in Top Technician 2018, a national competition that looks to identify the best garage professionals in the UK.

Matthew, who is from D&D Autos in Orbital Park, Ashford beat 1,000 mechanics from all over the UK to reach the final. He received a runner-up trophy and a major prize bundle in the long-running national competition by showing a first-class diagnostic process and top-notch fault-finding abilities on a range of vehicles. While Matthew has entered the competition on a number of occasions this was the first time he made it to the final.

Commenting on his achievement in the competition, Matthew said: “I was pleased to have reached the finals at all, so to come second is a massive thing for me. It has been a brilliant experience and I will definitely be entering the competition again next year.”

Shaun Miller of Millers Garage in Newbury, Berkshire was this year’s overall winner.

As runner up, Matthew received an extensive prize package, including bundles and high-price individual items from sponsors Pico Technology, Pro-Align, Ring Automotive and Snap-on. There was also a £500 cash prize from organisers Aftermarket magazine.

This year saw almost 1,000 techs take the initial online test, with that number brought down to ten for a practical semi-final and five for the final, where contestants have to show their skills fixing faults placed on vehicles by a team of industry experts. The final was followed by the Top Technician/Top Garage Gala Dinner, where the winners for both Top Technician and sister competition Top Garage were named.

Top Technician 2018 and Top Garage 2018 come to you in association with ABC Awards, Auto iQ, the Garage Equipment Association (GEA), the Independent Automotive Aftermarket Federation (IAAF) and the Independent Garage Association (IGA).

About Top Technician

Top Technician is a national competition that was established in 2002 in order to find the UK’s most skilled automotive technicians. Top Technician has evolved into the key competition to win in the sector. The early rounds take place online, with the final rounds involving practical sessions that take place live, under workshop conditions.

First and foremost, Top Technician is a training tool, allowing technicians to test their knowledge and learn where they require training.