Shearer Ben Barrett has made the NSW shearing team and was one of three selected in the Dubbo heat.
From there, it’s on to Victoria in October and if he makes it onto the national team, he will compete in Ireland.
His winning time was 16.5 seconds, but time is not all shearers are judged on. It must also be a clean shear with few or no cuts.
Mr Barrett has been shearing for 20 years. He started shearing at just eight years old.
He was taught by his neighbour Ron Hansford and from the age of two or three, loved working with him on the farm.
Since then, he has learnt what he could from other shearers also travelling to New Zealand a few times.
He says the industry is ahead in New Zealand. Records are often broken and people there think that shearing should become an Olympic sport.
He also says New Zealand sheep are easier to shear as they have fewer wrinkles.
“The trick to shearing well is not to lift your hand too high, but to shear close to the skin,” he said. “Concentration is also important. You’ve got to believe you’re the only one there.”
Mr Barrett practises in 15-minute stints, focusing on his technique and has already noticed an improvement.
For those who are interested in shearing, he believes that Wellington is a good place to start.
“Being in an area where there are really good shearers makes it easier.
“We had a guy come from Sydney for 12 months and he reached the stage where he managed to shear 200 in one day. Shearing is never going to die out there’s always going to be a job.
“Many people go to the mines because it’s good money, but it is just as good in sheep and the lifestyle is better, instead of being in the tractor by yourself all day you are in the shed with good people,” he said.