First Ever Technician Repair Olympics Held in Las Vegas
The Auto Glass Technician Olympics has a new sibling-The Walt Gorman Windshield Repair Olympics.
The newest event of Auto Glass Week at the International Auto Body Conference and Expo (NACE), held at the Mandalay Bay Convention Center in Las Vegas last week, was the first annual windshield repair competition.
Seven contestants from around the industry competed in the new event, a national competition designed to find the auto glass repair technician who completes the best auto glass repair.
When the last repair was finished, Thomas "Tee" Thompson of Star/Superglass in Albuquerque, N.M., picked up the first-place gold medal and trophy as well as $1,000. Second place and $500 went to Jeff Olive of Glasspro Inc. in Mt. Pleasant, S.C., and the bronze medal and $250 went to Andy Larimore of Windshield Repair Specialists in Boise, Idaho.
Also competing in the first Walt Gorman Windshield Repair Olympics were Michael Curl (Glass Pro Systems), Rich DiMassa (Dents Out Plus), Kelly Ditto (Cindy Rowe Auto Glass) and Jeff Wurst (Crackmaster).
The judges for the Olympics were Jay Bickford, director-training and development, NOVUS Glass, and Paul Gross, president, Harmon Solutions Group.
Judging for the Walt Gorman Windshield Repair Olympics covered six major areas, including customer interaction and technician comportment, as well as safe and proper repair procedures. The judging is based on the NWRA recommended practices and the current draft of the Repair of Laminated Auto Glass Standard (ROLAGS).
Asked how it feels to be the first Windshield Repair Olympics champion, Thompson said, "It feels great. I'm glad it's over; it was a little stressful."
Thompson said that he had been preparing for this for the last 20 years. "Since the advent of the NWRA certification program, I've been following these steps every day."
Will he compete again next year? "That remains to be seen," he stated.
"I want to thank all the unsung heroes, mainly the founders of the NWRA, for all of the time they've put into developing the first certification program and now ROLAGS, along with the family at SuperGlass," Thompson added.
The event is sponsored by AGRR Magazine and co-located with the International Autobody Congress & Exposition (NACE).
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