How well — and how fast — can you wrap the side of a 2018 Ford Mustang GT? That’s the challenge nine two-person teams faced in the Wrap Team Challenge, hosted by the Specialty Graphic Imaging Association’s (SGIA) PDAA Committee over the three days of last week’s 2018 SGIA Expo.
Three teams took home cash prizes and bragging rights:
• First place ($2,000): Istvan (Steve) Hargittai, Florida Car Wrap, and Jim Miller, Miller Decals
• Second place ($1,000): Damon Miles and Derek Trahan, Corporate Installations Inc.
• Third place ($500): Shane Lloyd, GeckoWraps, and Frank Oliver, Phatautowraps
The competitors tried to wrap the side of the Mustang in the time allotted and were judged on the quality of their install. The top teams advanced to the next day, until the third day, when the remaining pairs vied for the top prize of $2,000. Arlon, Ritrama and 3M sponsored the competition and provided material for each day’s heats.
“Part of the challenge was using a different sponsor’s materials daily as you progressed in the competition,” said Ray Weiss, Director of Digital Print Programs, SGIA. “Each job was unique — just as it is in real life. The winners truly earned their bragging rights.”
As crowds gathered and excitement built, judges evaluated each job based on speed and quality of cleaning, placement, completion, customer readiness and door handle treatment: Head Judge Jeremy Connor, Owner/President of Who Did That Inc., whose judging experience includes the FESPA World Wrap Masters in Mexico City and Berlin, and the FESPA European Wrap Masters in Berlin; Jermaine Tucker, Owner, Advanced Graphic Installations; and Nathan VanderVliet, President, Exotic Vehicle Wraps.
“Thank you, PDAA and SGIA, for allowing us to share our passion and experience with other wrappers during the event. I have participated in many competitions, but this team challenge was by far the best. Keep doing it and make the industry better!” said Hargittai.
Adjacent to the competition and also in the PDAA booth, the WrapQuest area, sponsored by Orafol, drew attendees who worked with PDAA installers to get hands-on experience with vinyl and color-changing materials.
“WrapQuest and the Wrap Team Challenge underscored the importance of innovation, interaction and inspiration, providing a forum where attendees could meet and learn from some of the greatest installers in the country while experiencing the latest products,” said Weiss.
The Wrap Team Challenge will return in 2019 at the inaugural PRINTING United Expo (Dallas, October 23–25).