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Refinishing First: One-on-one with SkillsCanada gold medalist painter Dorien Lozeau

Toronto, Ontario — As the organization finalizes its roster for the international competition, results from this year’s Skills Canada 2022 National Competition have begun rolling in, forming the team that will represent the Canadian collision industry on the WorldSkills stage.

Collision Repair managed to get a hold of two-time gold medal-winning automotive refinisher—former Bodyworx Professional cover star, painter at Calgary’s CSN Black Ace, Dorien Lozeau, 22, for a chat about what went down in Vancouver this year, and what is to come for this fall’s international competition.

CRM: You recently competed at this year’s SkillsCanada National Competition where you won a gold medal in car painting and have since advanced to the WorldSkills Competition. Could you talk a little bit about how the SkillsCanada competition went?

DL: It went really well this year, being back in person. Last year they had to do a virtual competition so it was nice to get to go out to Vancouver for the nationals and meet a bunch of people. It was pretty awesome.

CRM: What was involved in your portion of the competition?

DL: In the auto painting category that I was in, we had to repair a plastic bumper and paint some custom graphics on it, all in a limited period of time. We also had to remove some defects from a hood that was already painted. It was full of dust nibs and runs, so we had to remove the defects and cut and polish the hood, then apply some paint protection film to the front end. There was also a little bit of colour tinting and colour evaluation and stuff like that.

CRM: SkillsCanada judges are known to test their competitors with some new technology they must learn on the day. Was there anything at this year’s competition that took you by surprise?

DL: They definitely do surprise you sometimes, but I actually felt pretty prepared this year. At this point, there isn’t much I haven’t done before, so when a problem comes up I just work through it. It all went pretty well.

CRM: What was it like being able to share tips and insights with tradespeople from all across Canada?

DL: It was pretty cool having a bunch of tradespeople from all over Canada. We all kind of share a similar perspective on the trades; that being, work hard, play hard.

CRM: How have your competitive successes been received at home and at CSN Black Ace?

DL: Nearly everywhere I went after I won someone would compliment me on it, so it was pretty cool. There were signs all over town about it.

CRM: Do you have a message you want to send to any other young people who may be considering a career in the trades?

DL: My message for anyone thinking of getting into the trade is to take your time and always be planning two steps ahead. Quality comes first and speed comes with time.

CRM: With your win at the national competition, what are you doing to prepare now that you have advanced to compete on the world stage?

DL: I’ve been doing lots of training. We actually hosted a training event at NAIT (Northern Alberta Institute of Technology) about two or three weeks ago. We invited all of the competitors from around the world and about six were able to make it out. We had a mini competition that helped us meet some of the people. There were people from Australia, Germany, the UK, the UAE and elsewhere. It was really cool to meet those guys. A few of them couldn’t speak English, but we could all paint, so it was pretty cool.

Germany is also hosting a training event in September in Neuss. We’re going to that one ahead of the start of the event of the world, so that should be a cool experience as well.

Keep track of Dorien as he prepares

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