Beginning as a small boy, Jon Farino dreamed of working on a drag car racing crew. Barrie “Bazzz” Young, Snap-on Incorporated’s president of sales and franchising, held the same dream.
Automotive Technology training delivered at Gateway Technical College gave Jon the skills to be able to help fulfill his dream, as well as Barrie’s – he now works on Barrie’s racing team.
“It’s something I always wanted to do,” says Jon. “I watched drag racing all my life. When the opportunity came up, it’s something I could not miss. I immediately jumped on it.”
Barrie raced drag cars 30 years ago and had dreamed of doing so again. He knew the partnership Gateway and Snap-on held through the Automotive Technology program, so he was aware of the high quality training and equipment offered at the college. He wanted to involve some students in the race team he was personally sponsoring.
“I wanted to see if there was any interest with the students in working on a race car,” said Barrie. “Wayne (Ream) and Jon (Farino) stepped forward immediately. They have done extremely well. I think it’s a tribute to the training that goes on at Gateway.”
The real-world experience of being on the team will translate into whatever specific area of automotive technology he decides to enter, says Jon.
“It has helped me to better troubleshoot any engine or vehicle issues,” says Jon. “Between every single race, we have to rebuild the engine and there is a lot of maintenance on the car – all of that will help me when I work on a regular car.”
Jon says he’s grateful for the opportunity to work on a race car crew and the benefits of doing so are immeasurable.
“Without this opportunity, without the partnership Gateway has with Snap-on, this never would have been possible for me. I really don’t think I would have had this opportunity to be able to work on a drag race team without Gateway. This was a chance of a lifetime, all thanks to Gateway.”