Outstanding performances by Bay of Plenty sports men and women on the world stage including the Olympic Games have been reflected in the finalists selected for the Waiariki Institute of Technology 2012 Bay of Plenty Sports Awards.



The awards organised each year by Sport Bay of Plenty, salute outstanding achievement by Bay of Plenty sportsmen and women in sport at home and abroad over the past 12 months. All category winners and the Supreme Award recipient are widely regarded as the ultimate accolade for sporting excellence in our region.



The six-strong judging panel sorted through almost 130 nominations for the Waiariki Institute of Technology 2012 Bay of Plenty Sports Awards, each category was hotly debated at the day-long judging session ahead of the gala awards evening to be held at Rotorua Energy Events Centre on Friday, November 16.



"The calibre of nominations and the variety of sports never fails to amaze, and it is fantastic what Bay of Plenty athletes, coaches, officials and administrators are achieving on the world stage. I certainly don't envy the judges who are charged with making the tough decisions and determining who the winners are," said Sport Bay of Plenty chief executive Wayne Werder.

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Finalists with achievements at the 2012 London Olympic Games include; JP Tobin (Sailing), Brent Newdick (Athletics), Jason Saunders (Sailing), Lisa Carrington (Canoe/Kayak), Gemma Flynn (Hockey), Luuka Jones (Canoe/Kayak), Mike Dawson (Canoe/Kayak), Peter Burling (Sailing), Sam Bewley (Cycling), Sarah Walker (BMX), Julia Edward (Rowing), Mahe Drysdale (Rowing), Kelly Hudson (Hockey) and Samantha Charlton (Hockey).



Also presented on the night are the Bay of Plenty Secondary School Sports Awards. These awards recognise sports sanctioned by the New Zealand Secondary School Sports Association and include the Bay of Plenty Polytechnic Secondary School Sportsman and Sportswoman of the Year awards, the Office Products Depot Boys Team of the Year, the Rotorua Trust Girls Team of the Year, the Aurecon Best Student Contribution to Sport, the CodeBlue Coach of the Year and the BOP Principals Association Secondary School Service to Sport award.



Professor Margaret Noble, chief executive of Waiariki Institute of Technology, said: "There is an excellent array of sporting talent in our region and Waiariki Institute of Technology is delighted be associated with these awards as they celebrate excellence and achievement in sport.



"Sport brings many people together for a common purpose and this is a great opportunity to recognise the achievements of our very best athletes as well as the important coaches, administrators, families and friends who have supported them along the way."



Tickets for the Waiariki Institute of Technology 2012 Bay of Plenty Sports Awards to be held at the Energy Events Centre on Friday, November 16, are available by contacting Valda Money at Sport Bay of Plenty on 07 578 0016 or email valdam@sportbop.co.nz.