Car News Contributors Claim AJAC Journalism Awards

Ajax, ON – The best in automotive writing, photography and auto content in Canada was recognized last night at the annual AJAC Journalism awards, with regular contributor Justin Pritchard being named as the Journalist of the Year award, presented by Jaguar Land Rover.

Based in Sudbury, Ontario, he drives four hours into the greater Toronto area to pick up press vehicles every week, before heading back another four hours back up north – summer and winter. He writes regular road tests and Used Car Reviews for, as well as videos and fun features.

Plus he has Co-Chaired the annual AJAC Canadian Car of the Year event for the last few years, where the award was presented, an event that brings together many of the newest vehicles each year to Canadian Tire Motorsports Park.

Outside of Pritchard’s win, it was another good showing by the team. Contributor Jeff Wilson won the Automotive Writing Award by Wakefield Castrol, the judges citing his Rolls-Royce Phantom First Drive in particular for standing out. 

The photography that Jeff did on that event also helped him win the PFAFF Pirelli Photography Award, its opening beauty shot in particular being lauded for its majestic qualities. Regular contributor Peter Bleakney was also recognized for his photography, as was Lesley Wimbush.

Managing editor Michael Bettencourt was cited for the Environmental Journalism award, presented by Nissan, in particular for a piece coming out of the Movin’ On sustainable mobility conference in Montreal, which examined the future of electric vehicles once government incentives are removed.3

Sister-site to, Canada Moto Guide was also represented when Mark Richardson won the Feature Writing Award presented by Subaru Canada for his Halloween piece: The Headless Motorcyclist on the Ghost Road.    

Our site was also recognized for a Kia Best Design award, for the area of the site where all of the many news items and features appear.

Regular contributor Lesley Wimbush was also honoured with the Julie Wilkinson Motorsport Journalism Award presented by Kal Tire, for a piece on some Canadian content (and triumph) at the 2018 IMSA Porsche GT3 Cup race in Sebring. 

Here is the complete list of 2018 award winners.

Automotive Writing Award presented by Wakefield Castrol (Technical Topics)
Winner : Sami Haj-Assaad
Runner-up: Mark Toljagic

Automotive Writing Award presented by Wakefield Castrol (Vehicle Testing)
Winner: Jeff Wilson
Runner-up: Mark Toljagic

 Best Print Design & Best Web Design Awards presented by Kia Canada
Winner (tie): Ignition: New Vehicle Buyer's Guide
- Lee Bailee
Winner (tie):
- Michael Taylor
- Michael Bettencourt

Environmental Journalism Award presented by Nissan Canada
Winner: Mark Richardson
Runner-Up: Michael Bettencourt

Feature Writing Award presented by Subaru Canada
Winner: Mark Richardson
Runner-Up: Lee Bailee

Journalist of the Year presented by Jaguar Land Rover
Winner: Justin Pritchard
1st Runner-up: Mark Richardson
2nd Runner-up: Marc Lachapelle 

Photography Award (published) presented by PFAFF Pirelli
Winer: Jeff Wilson
1st Runner-up: Peter Bleakney
2nd Runner-up: Kelly Taylor

Photography Award (unpublished) presented by PFAFF Pirelli
Winner: Russell Purcell
1st Runner-up: Brian Harper
2ns Runner-up: Lesley Wimbush

Road Safety Journalism Award presented by CAA
Winner: Kelly Taylor
Runner-up: Dale Johnson

The Julie Wilkinson Motorsport Journalism Award presented by Kal Tire
Winner: Lesley Wimbush

Video Journalism Award presented by Integrated Automotive Experience

Winner: Sami Haj-Assaad
Runner-up: Jesse Caron

Tony Sloga Award for Excellence in Automotive Public Relations
Gregory Young Mazda Canada