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TWO Victorian apprentices were recently named as the top performers among the current cohort of trainees at Renault Australia, with Werribee Renault first-year apprentice Haris Omerovic and Central Renault (Richmond) second-year apprentice David Nguyen topping their respective class for 2016.

Mr Omerovic placed first from a class of 15 apprentices who completed their first year of training, with Nathan O’Brien from Warrnambool Renault on Victoria’s south-west coast in second place, and Lei-Han Lee from AMR Renault in Sydney third.

Among 16 second-year apprentices, Mr Nguyen topped the field ahead of Ryan Pardon from Townsville’s Parry Renault in second place, and Taylor Nudl from Sydney’s Col Crawford Renault in third.

Second to none: 2016 Second Year Apprentice of the Year David Nguyen (right) with Renault Australia apprentice trainer/assessor Gary Devaney (left) and national service manager Mark Manns.

A further seven Renault apprentices graduated from the three-year training course, receiving formal qualifications of Certificate III in Light Vehicle Mechanical Technology and Certificate II in Automotive Air Conditioning Technology, along with Advanced Renault Technician (ART) status.

There was no specific ‘apprentice of the year’ award for this group.

As previously reported, Renault has relocated its apprenticeship training program from Sydney to Melbourne – with the help of $200,000 in Victorian government funding – and now runs the so-called Renault Academy in conjunction with the Kangan Institute’s Automotive Centre of Excellence.

The program is expected to turn out more than 200 qualified technicians by 2020.

The Australian subsidiary of the French brand, which is closely aligned with Nissan, has invested heavily in dealer technician and apprentice education and training in recent years as its retail network has grown in conjunction with expanding vehicle sales.

There are currently 54 Renault dealerships across Australia, through which 11,109 vehicles were sold last year.

By Terry Martin

Taylor Nudl

Dealer Solutions