Readers of F&I and Showroom voted Greg Paul “GP” Anderson the winner of the magazine’s inaugural F&Idol contest, sponsored by Innovative Afermarket Systems. The F&I manager for Thielen Motors, Park Rapids, Minn., was honored during a special ceremony at the publication’s Industry Summit 2011.

Anderson was one of five finalists vying for the top prize, a check for $2,500 and the F&Idol trophy. He also will appear in the magazine’s November issue, which will offer a closer look at the more than 20-year F&I pro.

“Attitude determines your altitude,” Anderson said during his acceptance speech at the conference. “The world doesn’t care how old you are, your profession. Money follows service, period. And the way to provide excellent service is to be a master in your art.”

The F&Idol contest was launched in mid-July. Readers of the magazine were asked to submit their best on-camera F&I presentations in five categories: Vehicle Service Contracts, GAP, Tire and Wheel, Key Replacement and Theft Deterrent.

The videos had to be less than five minutes long, and each contestant was asked to successfully handle at least two objections. Judging those videos were: Gregory Arroyo, the magazine’s executive editor; Bob Corbin, IAS; “Mad” Marv Eleazer, magazine columnist; Ron Reahard, Reahard and Associates Inc.; Steve Veldkamp, Great Lakes Co.; Alan Miller, CNA National Warranty Corp.; Robert Harkins RAH Consulting; and Randall Crisorio, president and CEO of United Development Systems.

Anderson was the winner in the GAP category. Other winners included:

• Vehicle Service Contract: Chris Bonilla of Auburn Chevrolet, Auburn, Wash.

• Key Replacement: Jim Hesselgrave of Crown Honda, Pinella Park, Fla.

• Tire and Wheel: Paul Vanderkamp of DeNooyer Chevrolet, Kalamazoo, Mich.

• Theft Deterrent: Raymond Borg of The Suburban Collection, Troy, Mich.

In early September, the magazine asked readers to vote online for the overall winner, creating a voting site that showcased the videos submitted by the five category winners. More than 4,500 votes were received, with Anderson receiving more than 50 percent of the vote.

“What an exciting contest, and I’m looking forward to doing it again next year,” said Arroyo. “Each of our category winners did a stellar job. As for GP, well, his use of personal stories is what really impressed our judges. And by the voting, it was clear that’s what impressed our readers.”

To view the five winning entries, click here.