Delo TRC crowns 2017 Grand Champion
Corey Verstraeten of Southwest High School FFA in San Antonio Texas brought home the Delo® TRC Grand Champion title and $10,000 for his restoration of a 1972 Oliver 1755 Tractor.
Over 3 years Corey grew physically from his first year as finalist, but also into a young adult with new skills, confidence and experience. “This competition has been such a great experience for me,” said Verstraeten. “After last year’s finals appearance, I knew I was close to this goal and really worked to improve in this year’s restoration. I couldn’t be prouder of the result and I know the past few years will serve me well as I move forward in my life.” Delo TRC Grand Champions and finalists typically receive local and nation press coverage, which is impressive resume material.
Students learn from their restoration and often compete over multiple years as they strive to take home the title. Corey’s drive to restore and win has accelerated from his first restoration.
While working on his restoration project, Corey was instrumental in attracting Holt Caterpillar to offer apprenticeships at his school. Corey was selected as one of 19 Holt interns. Corey plans to attend Texas State Technical College in the Fall, following his brother Brent who was also a TRC finalist. Both boys have offset tuition with prize money and scholarships.
One veteran school advisor commented that the Delo TRC is a great competition teaching kids dedication, teamwork and love for working with their hands. This competition really makes a difference in the lives of these kids—and the community. Many go on to graduate with good paying jobs right out of high school and no college debt. One former Grand Champion continues to be a Chevron Delo ambassador many years after earning the Grand Champion title because it changed her life. She now pays it forward as an Ag instructor at the very school she once attended.
“Each year you think it can’t get more difficult to determine a winner out of these 12 finalists, but these young adults continue to amaze,” said Dan Holdmeyer, Industrial and Coolants Brand Manager, Chevron Products Company. “The level of hard work and ingenuity will make lasting impacts on their lives moving forward in their careers. This is so much more than a restoration competition at Chevron and we’re happy to be equipping these students with everything they’ll need to succeed in the future.”
The competition is open to all high school students and fundraising often offsets restoration expenses. Teams involve the community as they seek to raise funds and awareness. Marketers who donate product can use their Max Funds for reimbursement.
The 2018 competition opens in April and teams must submit their workbook documenting their restoration, before and after photos, and a video showing the final working tractor by mid-August. For more information visit DeloTractorRestorationCompetition.com or send an email to Info@DeloTRC.com.