The Australian WorldSkills Championships are over, and the top welder has been announced as Joshua Harris, hailing from Kyogle.

Metalworker Magazine reported that, according to Joshua he practiced his welding skills after work three times a week, five hours a night.

He was named under-20 welding champion after the three-day competition in Sydney, in which 22 welders competed in three five-hour welding shifts.

A panel of 13 judges determined the winner on the basis of quality of workmanship and the safety of their conduct.

The winner said although the constant supervision was daunting, control was paramount, because welding required steady hands.

He claims it was a good simulation of the pressure involved in the welding industry, where a bad weld could cause potentially fatal breakage.

Joshua will be representing Australia at the International World Skills Championships in Canada later in 2008.

He works for McKeeco Pty Ltd in Lismore and studied at the North Coast Institute of TAFE, Wollongbar.

WorldSkills Australia promotes trade and skill excellence through competitions across Australia and around the globe for those who want to be the best in their field.

WorldSkills Australia also holds a public and interactive program called Try’a Trade, which allows you to get a taste of skills in up to 50 categories to give you an idea of what the career involves.