Australian refrigeration and air conditioning WorldSkills champion Patrick Brennan is in the final stages of preparation for the 45th WorldSkills International Competition in Kazan, Russia.
The competition will be held from August 22–27. It will bring together more than 1,600 young professionals representing more than 60 countries and regions. They will compete in 56 skills. More than 250,000 spectators are expected to attend the competition and associated events.
In the lead-up to the big event at the end of this month, he has spent time away from his employer (Tony Stephens Refrigeration & Air Conditioning in Gympie, Queensland) to practise full time.
Brennan’s trainer and mentor, Carl Balke, Affil.AIRAH, says that the training has been gruelling. Sessions have run from 7.30am to 4pm, five days a week at SkillsTech Acacia Ridge TAFE Queensland.
“Paddy has been here for the last three weeks and it has been very productive,” Balke says. “We have had fantastic support from Kirby, who have donated equipment that is listed for the competition. As we don’t know the layout of the system [in the competition], we have been training with differing formats to simulate a ‘blind’ competition.
“It has been a long almost 18 months of organising regional competitions, training for the nationals, waiting for the result to be announced, then training for the next 10 months … to be only a couple of weeks away from seeing the results of all this effort, training and support from family and employer,” Balke says.
“Aiming to finish in the top 10 – a medal would be a dream – with the limits we have in Australia is challenging to say the least. But that Aussie fighting spirit that is evident in Paddy makes it all very worth it.”
Brennan is raring to go.
“To gain selection in the Skillaroos team and to represent Australia is a great honour,” he says. “I will give everything I have and more to make my family, my friends, my workplace, my town and my country proud.”
Patrick’s WorldSkills journey is supported by Kirby.
Photo courtesy of WorldSkills Australia: Carl Balke (left) and Patrick Brennan.