2018 Sports Star. Photo: Bill Conroy

THE Peak Bendigo Sports Star of the Year awards night is just three weeks away, with tickets to the Friday, March 1 event selling fast.

The popular gala event brings together some of the region’s most celebrated sporting personalities to acknowledge current and emerging champions as part of Australia’s longest running community sports awards.

August’s nominees are footballer Andrea Walsh and distance runner Andy Buchanan.

Walsh won the Northern Football League’s women’s goal-kicking award for the second year in a row, booting 53 goals in the club’s premiership winning season.

Buchanan became the first athlete in 20 years to achieve back-to-back 10 kilometre cross-country title victories, when he outran his rivals on the hilly Maleny Golf Club course on the Gold Coast.

In September, the monthly nomination was shared between veteran athlete Geoff Shaw and West Coast Eagles premiership star Tom Cole.

Shaw was a gold medallist in the decathlon for the 70-plus division at the World Masters Track and Field Championships in Malega, Spain.

The Bendigo Harriers stalwart won six of 10 events run across the two days.

Cole capped a brilliant season with the West Coast Eagles, when the side defeated Collingwood in a thrilling AFL grand final by just five points. Cole overcame the death of his father earlier in the year to play a key role in the Eagles charge to premiership glory. The 21-year-old was drafted by the Eagles via the Bendigo Pioneers in 2015.

October’s nomination was won by swimmer Jenna Strauch, after the dedicated athlete qualified for the FINA Short Course world championships by winning the 200m breaststroke at the Australian swimming titles.

Strauch earned her place on the side that went on to represent Australia in Hangzhou, China in December. Her major goal is to compete at the 2020 Tokyo Olympics.

In November, cricketer Tayla Vlaeminck and cycling coach Tim Decker shared the nomination.

Vlaeminck was part of the Australian women’s squad which cruised to its fourth T20 World Cup victory in Antigua, where the Aussies thrashed England in the final by eight wickets.

Tim, a former Bendigo based cyclist, was crowned the Cycling Australia Coach of the Year. Decker coached the Australian men’s team pursuit squad to a world record win at the Commonwealth Games.

Tickets for the March 1 black tie event to be held at the All Seasons Resort are just $95, including two course dinner and drinks.

For tickets visit Bendigo Tourism, 51-67 Pall Mall, phone 1800 813 153 or go to www.bendigotourism.com/tours/bendigo/peak-bendigo-sports-star