April 18: The final day of competition in Madrid included semi finals for NAME (North Africa, Middle East) region and Volvo Buses.
Nine teams from China, Mexico, USA, Saudi Arabia, Egypt, Ethiopia, Algeria, Iran and Kuwait took part in the morning session, while seven teams from Lebanon, Morocco, Oman, Qatar, Tunisia, United Arab Emirates and Bahrain, competed in the afternoon.
For the teams in the Volvo Buses semi final, the competition is even more challenging due to the many truck-related questions and tasks. Yet they remain undeterred, and have just studied that much harder.
“We prepared after work, and have spent a lot of hours practicing with busses and trucks,” say team Ace, a bus team from China.
“We had two weeks of nonstop training,” say 12th Gear, a team from the USA. “We trained a lot with things like brakes, transmission, air conditioning and suspension. We had to train more with trucks and we had to study more theory because today is the first time we’ve seen these trucks.”
Yet when the competition finishes, their results no longer seem important. They’ve learnt a lot and enjoyed every minute of the experience: “It’s our first time in VISTA and we love it.”
Compared to many of the earlier semi finals, the NAME semi final covers a much larger geographical area, and includes many private dealerships in markets relatively new to Volvo. But the enthusiasm for the competition is just as strong.
“We’ve trained a lot,” say Challenge team, who come from Tunisia. “Since the last round until now we’ve trained together and practiced working under time limits for one to two hours every week before the weekend.”
With many teams coming from private dealerships, participants also embrace the opportunity to meet new colleagues and learn more about Volvo systems.
“We like VISTA because it’s a way to share information with people from other countries,” says Hamid Reza Abdi Amiri, Iran technical manager and trainer. “But mainly it’s team work, a good training event where you learn a lot and a nice way to travel, visit new places and meet people.”
“VISTA is a great experience,” say Shooting Star, a team from Egypt. “You work under time pressure, work as a team, share ideas – everything! It’s also a good opportunity to meet people that previously you only knew by mail or phone.”
Results – teams qualified for the world final
NAME: RCB Techs, United Arab Emirates
Volvo Buses: Los Cuatreros, Mexico