IN what’s being billed as a world first, teams of tractor mechanics will compete in a reality-TV style challenge for a R100 000 prize.
Presented by agriculture equipment distributor AGCO Africa as a way to showcase the skills of Massey Ferguson (MF) mechanics countrywide, the “Master Mechanic” reality challenge premieres on YouTube and Facebook at 6.30pm today, 3 November 2021.
It is made up of a series of three short episodes. Six participants in three teams will compete for the grand prize.
AGCO Africa Head of Marketing Lionel Coetzee said the winning team will be determined by a well-known television personality as the show host, in conjunction with two specialist judges from the company, who will score the teams on the criteria of technical ability, MF product knowledge and teamwork.
The tractor that will be used in the reality challenge is the MF 2640.
“With the MF Master Mechanic reality challenge, we hope to create an experience that provides value to our customers. MF has always been about the innovation of new concepts to make it easier for the farmer. The farmer is at the centre of everything we do, and we want to continue contributing to this space in a manner that benefits farmers most,” Coetzee said.
He added that mechanics from the national MF dealer network in South Africa were invited to enter. “Entrants were required to submit a two-minute ‘audition’ video, many of which proved to be entertaining and demonstrating a high level of confidence and enthusiasm.”
Richard Heald Director Field Service for APA (Asia-Pacific and Africa) said MF mechanics are often the first on a farm to fix any issue, frequently staying late until it is resolved.
“They do not get much praise, yet they do it again and again. We wanted to highlight these people who sometimes have to face an angry customer, work on a tractor alone for many hours and troubleshoot through difficult problems. They succeed time and again in getting these machines back up and running and the customer happy,” Heald said.
Coetzee said the show had been designed and filmed in a way that anyone can understand and enjoy it, not just the technically inclined.