Local electricians put their skills to the test at Alcoa’s Lowe’s on Thursday for a chance to win a trip to Nashville and take part in a national competition.

The IDEAL National Championship is an annual competition in Nashville where electrical professionals, apprentices and students face off for a chance to win a hefty cash prize.

On Thursday, IDEAL and R Brantley Associates (RBA) partnered with Lowe’s to hold a qualifying event for the championship at 15 stores across the country, including the Lowe’s at Hunter’s Crossing.

“It’s a qualifying event hosted by IDEAL Industries where you can wire up a three-way circuit,” RBA Sales Manager Will Hunt said. “The fastest top two times can win prizes today and if you have the fastest time out of all of the events, you get qualified to go to the national finals in Nashville.”

Hunt explained that the trip to Music City could result in a life-changing prize.

“It’ll be an all-expense-paid trip and you can win up to 60 grand,” Hunt said.

Even if the fastest contestant at the Alcoa location was unable to win the coveted trip to the National Championship, they were awarded a $100 Lowe’s gift card and a Little Giant ladder.

Hunt added that the opportunity is not just for experienced electricians. The competition also provides a chance for students to prove their skills before moving into the field.

“It’s designed for electrical contractors,” Hunt said. “It’s for electricians that are currently in the trade but it’s also for students who wants to get into the trade. We have two categories of competition, one for pros and one for students.”

Hunt explained that IDEAL created the competition five years ago and plans to continue hosting the event in the future because it’s a way to invest in the future of the electrical trade.

“It’s a big investment,” Hunt said. “IDEAL is fully vested into the electrical community and they want to support the tradesmen coming up who are excellent at their trade.”

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