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by David Zalstein

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How does Renault Australia reward its top technicians and apprentices? Simple. It throws them in a Renault Megane Trophy V6 racer for a few hot laps around the Phillip Island Grand Prix circuit.

Intended to reward those individuals deemed the best in Renault Australia’s independent dealer network, the 15 winners of Renault’s own 2016 Technician and Apprentice Challenge were selected from a total of 130 technicians and 50 apprentices.

With winners decided based on points accrued for specific criteria, the lucky ones were Senior Technicians Andreas Chloupek, Barry Heale, Colin Burstow, Sean McDermott, Anthony Sferopoulos, David Earle, Rozaiman Ramiee, and Drew Anderson, Technicians Jacob Homan, Matthew Baker, and Matthew Rawson, and Apprentices Alexander Colemam, Fraser Doran, Luke Curnow, and Joshua Robertson.

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Top Australian rally driver Brendan Reeves – set to compete at this week’s Rally Australia event in Coffs Harbour – was the man charged with piloting the 260kW, sub-1000kg Renault Megane Trophy V6 around the world-famous Phillip Island racetrack, ensuring those in the passenger seat were kept suitably impressed.

“The car was like nothing I’ve ever driven before,” Reeves told CarAdvice.

“It had very smooth power and the light body meant for extremely late braking. Having Phillip Island to ourselves for an entire day was an incredible experience.”

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Renault Australia managing director Justin Hocevar said the Technician and Apprentice Challenge, and the reward for its winners, is all about “putting our people first”.

“Our winning technicians and apprentices demonstrated outstanding knowledge and skills and are more than deserving of this experience,” Hocevar said.

If you happened not to be present when Renault Australia booked out Phillip Island, the Renault Megane Trophy V6 – powered by a mid-mounted 3.5-litre V6 engine – will be at this month’s Geelong Revival Motoring Festival (Nov 25-27), with V8 Supercars veteran Cameron McConville set for some time at the wheel.

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