I'd be lost without her

Article in TV Week Magazine - Monday 31st May 2021

Brent wouldn't be here without the support of his wife Shonleigh.

Falling in love with the girl next door might sound like a something out of a romance novel, but for MasterChef Australia contestant Brent, it was his lucky reality.

After being introduced to his new neighbour Shonleigh by a mate, the pair quickly hit it off.

"We've been together for 10 years and married for five.", boilermaker Brent, 31, tells TV week proudly. "She was literally the girl next door. We were really good friends for six months and then I just moved in. We've been together ever since."

It was Shonleigh who encouraged the 31-year-old to take a chance and apply to be on MasterChef. And after having their first child, Alfie, who's now two, Brent tells how he felt a desire to pursue a different path.

"I wasn't enjoying being a tradie", he admits. "The long hours... it wasn't lighting me up anymore. The minute I had Alfie, my whole outlook on life changed - I realised I had to do something that lights me up so I can show him to do exactly the same."

With Shonleigh's unwavering support, Brent followed his dreams to MasterChef. While he's loving his time on the reality favourite, having to leave Shonleigh and Alfie behind has proved a wrench.

"The hardest thing is being apart from my best friend," Brent says of his wife. "The longest we've been apart in 10 years if three days.

"Shonleigh is amazing. She's always pushed me to be better. While i'm away, she's been looking after Alfie, keeping the house from burning down, and running her two businesses on her own. I've always look up to her."