Tag Archives: WA

A Name to Watch: Nicholas Coci – Fastest Trowel and Bronze Medal Winner

nicolas cociWatch out for 18 year old, third year apprentice Nicholas Coci! Nick, from Carabooda WA who won the ABBTF Gun Trowel speed test at the National WorldSkills competition in Perth in September, in addition to the Bronze Medal in the main event!

The speed competition involves building a four brick pier in a spiral pattern with red and cream bricks in 15 minutes.

Nick took out the trophy with his pier being judged the best in terms of line, level and plumb, as well as height. He was presented with a Golden Trowel engraved with the title of the fastest trowel – no mean feat for an 18 year old.

This signature event for Bricklaying drew a large crowd with many people arriving early to get a vantage point. The atmosphere was electric with the expectant crowd and the introduction of each young bricklayer vying for fastest trowel in Australia. The field of anxious competitors held their trowels in the air in readiness for the start.

The crowd watched on as each brick pier grew with bricks and mortar flying high. Loris Moriconi from ABN Apprentices called the event and conducted the final countdown to the 15 minute time limit.

ABBTF was inspired to create and include the Gun Trowel speed test in its regular National WorldSkills event because of its excitement and the opportunity to test another skill of the trade. It has gathered fame and popularity as a real crowd pleaser at national competitions with some other trades attempting similar events.

Congratulations Nick for being the fastest gun in the West – not to mention national Gun Trowel winner and WorldSkills Bricklaying Bronze Medal winner!


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Sandgropers Shine at WorldSkills

Alan Ramsden at Leipzig, Germany with Aussie supporters

In July this year, Alan Ramsden 2nd year HIA bricklaying apprentice from Perth, represented Australia at the International WorldSkills Competition in Leipzig Germany (Skills Olympics).  WorldSkills is a very exciting and inspiring competition where selected apprentices get a chance to compete against other under 21 year old apprentices from around the world.

The projects in the competitions are very challenging and parallel the higher competencies found in the latter part of a brick and blocklaying apprenticeship.

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WA Apprentices at 2013 National Golden Trowel Competition

From left: Simon Ripepi Stage 2 Apprentice, Eddie Campbell Trainer, Alan Ramsden Stage 3 Apprentice

A WA team recently matched the best in the country when competing against 11 other TAFE’s at the Golden Trowel competition in Coffs Harbour (early September). Western Australia’s team consisted of Team Leader Eddie Campbell of Polytechnics West, Simon Ripepi of ABN Training and Alan Ramsden of HIA Training.

The competition is a major event for the Concrete Masonry Association of Australia (CMAA) which is held every two years.  The Golden Trowel Award is supported by ABBTF as the major sponsor.

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Colin Healey is Best ABN Host Trainer for 2013

Colin Healey flanked by Alan McGrath Austral Bricks (left) and Loris Moriconi ABN Training (right)

ABN Training recognised their best apprentices and host trainers for 2013 at their recent Training awards.  Colin Healey (bricklayer and host trainer) was recognised as best overall host trainer.  Loris Moriconi, Apprentice Program Manager at ABN Training, the ABN Group’s registered training body, said the awards recognised the cream of the crop.

Colin Healey, contract bricklayer to APG Homes, has trained up to 20 bricklaying apprentices in his 40 years with industry as a bricklayer.

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