Eye on the Industry

Passion Fuels Scholarship Recipient

The Milwaukee® Laurie Starling Scholarship for Innovation and Excellence in Automotive award is presented annually to a young and talented up-and-comer in the industry.

This year’s winner, 19-year-old Corey Scragg from Deluxe Rod Shop, joins a prestigious list of Australia’s brightest young automotive designers and fabricators to have been recognised with the award.

The Laurie Starling Scholarship for Innovation and Excellence in Automotive Fabrication was established in 2015 by Laurie’s parents, Rob and Julia Starling, after the talented fabricator passed away, aged 29.

In 2021, Milwaukee Tool partnered with the Starlings to help preserve Laurie’s legacy and foster the growth of younger students studying an accredited course in automotive design or fabrication.

Scragg was awarded the honour at the annual Street Machine VIP party in Canberra during Summernats 34.

Along with AUD$4,000 to help with tuition fees, Scragg also received AUD$3,500 (RRP) worth of Milwaukee tools to help with his work at Deluxe Rod Shop, under the tuition of workshop owner Steven Alldrick.

“It means a lot, and it’s a lifetime achievement,” he said. “Dad and Steve were proud as, and so was the whole team from the shop.”

There is no doubting Scragg’s talent and passion for his chosen craft. He played a significant role in resurrecting Kevin and Margaret Baird’s FX Holden, built at Deluxe and a stand-out at Summernats 34.

“I did a fair bit on it, like the fabrication and a lot of the assembly work,” Scragg explained.

“Originally, the owner just wanted to restore it, then he wanted a small-block, and then he went and got an LS.”

“Like many projects, it just snowballed from there,” he said.

By the time the FX rolled into the Elite Hall at Summernats 34, Corey had contributed significantly to the build.

Scragg completed rust repairs in the guards, rear floorpan and sills, and lead work. He also made the air cleaner to suit the Edelbrock intake manifold, which he said helps hide the fact that it’s running an LS.

Winning the Laurie Starling Scholarship will help Scragg fulfil his dreams of owning his own shop one day. Until then, he’s excited about continuing his studies while working with Allrick at Deluxe Rod Shop.

“I always wanted to do cars, but everyone tried talking me out of it, saying I shouldn’t join my hobby and passion with work,” Scragg said.

“I started as an apprentice as a chippy, but I quickly discovered it wasn’t for me.”

Scragg’s father, a panel beater, knew Allrick and helped arrange for Scragg to work at Deluxe during his school holidays which then turned into a school-based apprenticeship.

“I’ve never looked back. I’ve been there for about three years now,” Scragg said.

Like every passionate car fanatic, Scragg has his own build in progress.

“I’ve got an XP sedan I’ve been working on, but that’s about ready to be moved on to help my two-door XP build that I’ve had for a bit over two years,” he said.

“I’ve slowly been piecing that together, and I’ve finally got everything to get stuck into it.

“I’m super excited about winning the scholarship, and I can’t thank Rob, Julia and the guys from Milwaukee [Tool] enough for giving me this amazing opportunity,” he added.

Applications for the Scholarship are open to Australian citizens or Permanent Residents enrolled in an accredited tertiary vocation institute such as TAFE or University.

To qualify, applicants will have completed at least the first year of a Certificate III or IV or a Diploma in or directly related to Vehicle Fabrication, or a Degree with application to Vehicle Design and Fabrication.

Milwaukee Tool is a proud supporter of the Laurie Starling Scholarship for Innovation and Excellence in Automotive Fabrication.

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