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Crawley College apprentice impresses Halfords bosses in competition  

5 June 2024

Crawley College apprentice impresses Halfords bosses in competitionA Crawley College apprentice came second place in the Halfords Apprentice of the Year competition, after being invited to complete a technical skills competition at a Halfords training academy. 

Light Vehicle Maintenance and Repair apprentice, Karl Clarke, is in the second year of his apprenticeship with Halfords and he excelled at every stage of the competition. 

A total of 90 Halfords apprentices were invited to apply, with just 19 selected to complete a technical skills challenge – including Karl.  

Four practical assessments followed, putting his technical knowledge and skill to the test – and he rose to the occasion – reaching the top 10 and receiving an invitation to Carlisle for an interview with the Halfords Talent Director and Head of Quality. 

Karl went on to take second place in the competition, and won hospitality tickets to watch the British Super Bikes at Donnington Park, donated by Euro Car Parts. 

Karl said: “It all started when I received an email about the competition and my boss really pushed me to apply because he believed in me, so that’s what I did.  

“To start, I did a 30-question quiz and had to write a little about myself, then a week later I got an email confirming I’d made it through to the next stage. There were four tasks to show our technical knowledge and after that we were told if we got to the final, which included an amazing tour of the Pirelli factory. 

“Overall, it was an amazing experience. I travelled across the country, stayed in some amazing hotels and met all the apprenticeship teams. I’d highly recommend other people to go for it.” 

Dean Wynter, Vice Principal at Crawley College, added: “To come second in this competition as a first year apprentice is an incredible achievement, and we are incredibly proud of Karl. 

“What he has achieved in a short time is fantastic, and I know we all look forward to seeing how his career progresses.” 

To discover more about apprenticeships offered through Crawley College, visit