Browse through the list of the previous winners of the Hawke's Bay Sportsperson of the Year Award and you will see a trend.

In Commonwealth Games years medallists have more often than not captured the supreme award at the annual Hawke's Bay Sports Awards function.

All Black Sevens representatives, Gillies Kaka with silver in 2014 and Zac Guildford with gold in 2010 are the most recent.

Whether or not Black Sticks hockey veteran Shea McAleese, a silver medallist on the Gold Coast, or Tall Ferns basketballer Josie Stockill can continue the trend won't be known until the May 26 function in Taradale's Pettigrew Arena.


Tall Blacks basketball coach Paul Henare, another bronze medal winner on the Gold Coast is tipped to retain his coach-of-the-year award but only the winners of the Disabled, Masters, Junior and Senior Sportsperson and Junior and Senior team awards become finalists for the supreme award, the NZME Hawke's Bay Sportsperson of the Year.

McAleese and Stockill are two of five high-quality finalists for the Senior award. The others are world champion kayaker Aimee Fisher, shearing world record holder Rowland Smith and NRL premiership winner Tohu Harris.

It will be a surprise if the supreme award winner doesn't come out of the Senior category. However the winner of the Junior category has the potential to upstage the Senior Category winner.

Multiple winner of the Junior category and 2015 winner of the supreme award, Commonwealth Games cyclist Regan Gough, is a finalist again. World champion rugby player Tiaan Falcon, world champion netballer Kimiora Poi and shot putter Nick Palmer, who won silver at the July Commonwealth Youth Games in the Bahamas, are the other junior category finalists.

The largest range of sports are represented in the annual awards with nominations from 33 different sports. The six judges have narrowed the record number of nominations down to 53 finalists across 14 categories.

"With a record number of nominations put forward representing 33 different sports, the judges have had a hard task of deciding the category winners for this year's awards," Sport Hawke's Bay commercial manager Ryan Hambleton said.

"The quality of nominations continues to increase and this year looks to be another great opportunity to celebrate all that is great about Hawke's Bay sport," he said.

"We want to thank everyone who took the time to complete a nomination, the quality of nominations we received was outstanding. It's great to see so many from Hawke's Bay taking this opportunity to recognise and celebrate successes in their sport, and acknowledge those who work so hard to make sport happen," Hambleton added.

"Every year it gets harder and harder to decide on who will win each category. This year in particular we were all really impressed with the quality of the nominations in the junior category.

"We have had young athletes performing in senior competitions and winning them, while some of our top sportspeople are representing New Zealand at their pinnacle events for their chosen sport. It's not an easy task and shows the great depth of talent we have here in the Hawke's Bay region," said long-time judge, Hawke's Bay soccer personality Terry Parkin.

Hawke's Bay's four-time world softball champion Thomas Makea and Hawke's Bay motor racing legend Greg Murphy will both be inducted into the Hall of Fame. Makea's father Thomas Makea snr, a fellow softballer, and netball's Judy Sutherland will both be recognised for lifetime contributions to their respective sports.

Radio Sport breakfast hosts Nathan Rarere and Mark Peard will be the evening's co-hosts. Tickets for the awards are highly sought after and can be purchased through Sport Hawke's Bay by visiting or visiting the organisation's office at Pettigrew-Green Arena.

Finalists are: Administrator: Ivan Aplin (Cycling), Sarah Shand (Tennis), Andrea Cullen (Hockey), Mike Bond (Triathlon).
Vidal Coach: Tafai Ioasa (Rugby), Charissa Barham (Netball), Paul Henare (Basketball), Heinrich Malan (Cricket).
Paladin Disabled Sportsperson: Kate McKelvie (Swimming), Guy Harrison (Athletics), Peter Cowan (Waka Ama).
Zeelandt Brewery Grassroots Club: Greendale Tennis Club (Tennis), Omni Gymnastics Centre (Gymnastics), All in Netball Touch Club (Netball/Touch), Napier Old Boys Marist Rugby Football Club (Rugby).
Ngāti Kahungunu Iwi Inc. Impact on Māori Sport: Julie Tangaere (Waka Ama), Ihaka Waerea (Rugby League), Jon Matthews (Waka Ama, Ki-o-Rahi, Rugby), Ngāti Kahungunu Māori Basketball.
Three Wise Birds Innovation in Sport: Hawke's Bay Mountain Bike Club, Bay City Roller Derby, Nimon Court in the Bay Netball Festival, Central Football.
Eastern Institute of Technology Junior Sportsperson: Tiaan Falcon (Rugby), Kimiora Poi (Netball), Nick Palmer (Athletics), Regan Gough (Cycling).
Youthtown Junior Sports Team: Hastings Boys' High School 1st XV, No 13 Squadron Air Training Corps Shooting Team, Hawke's Bay Under 15 Boys Basketball Team.
Spark Digital Lifetime Contribution to Sport: Judy Sutherland (Netball), Thomas Makea snr (Softball).
Kennedy Park Resort Masters Sportsperson: Anne Cairns (Waka Ama, Surf Lifesaving, Whitewater Rafting), Stuart Duff (Golf), Ben Bennett (Kayaking), Roni Nuku (Waka Ama).
Brebner Print Official: Gail Hussey (Triathlon), Joanna Burns (Synchronised Swimming), Fran Rose (Freediving), Tipene Cottrell (Rugby).
Hawke's Bay Today Senior Sportsperson: Aimee Fisher (Kayaking), Tohu Harris (Rugby League), Shea McAleese (Hockey), Rowland Smith (Shearing), Josie Stockill (Basketball).
Tremains Senior Sports Team: Hawke's Bay Hawkeyes (Speedway), Central Districts Stags (Cricket), Napier Old Boys Marist RFC Premier Team (Rugby), Napier Technical Old Boys Cricket Club (Cricket).
Nimon & Sons Sport Organisation: Triathlon Hawke's Bay, Hawke's Bay Hockey Association, Tennis Eastern, Hawke's Bay Netball.