The announcement of the 41st legend of Australian sport and induction of seven new members will be the highlights at the 35th Sport Australia Hall of Fame gala dinner on Thursday 10 October, 2019.
The night will also celebrate the announcement of ‘The Don’ Award to the athlete or team who, through their performance and example over the past 12 months, has most inspired the nation. A shortlist of nominations will be released in early October.
The Australian sports community will come together in Melbourne to honour the past, celebrate the present and inspire the future at the largest collective gathering of Australian sporting luminaries at the annual awards ceremony in Melbourne.
Super-cyclist Robbie McEwen AM has already been unveiled as a 2019 inductee in an announcement celebrating his final day Champs-Élysées exploits at the Tour de France. Additional induction announcements continue from this Sunday. The 2019 legend will be announced at the gala.
Established in 1985, The Sport Australia Hall of Fame represents over 170 years of Australian sporting history and aims to preserve and celebrate the history of Australian Sport, and to inspire the next generation of Australians to achieve their potential both in sport and life.
Last year, the late Richie Benaud OBE was posthumously elevated to become the 40th legend of Australian sport and veteran wheelchair racer Kurt Fearnley AO created history becoming the first athlete with a disability to win the coveted ‘The Don’ Award.
Inductees featured Socceroos star Harry Kewell, icon of Australian touring car racing Allan Moffat OBE, Australia’s first professional world surfing champion Wendy Botha, durable rugby league champion Darren Lockyer, four-time Olympic medallist Drew Ginn OAM and women’s basketball pioneer Robyn Maher AM and as the 2018 inducted athlete members.
Much-loved horse trainer Gai Waterhouse and Commonwealth Games and weightlifting administrator Sam Coffa AM were inducted as general members.
Membership to the Sport Australia Hall of Fame is widely considered the highest national sporting honour that can be bestowed. With 565 members and 40 legends it represents the pinnacle of Australian sporting excellence.
The new members will join the greats of Australian sport including Sir Donald Bradman AC, Dawn Fraser AC MBE, Betty Cuthbert AC MBE, Rod Laver AC MBE, Bart Cummings AM, Ron Barassi AM, Wally Lewis AM, John Eales AM, Greg Norman AO, Catherine Freeman OAM, Layne Beachley AO, Ricky Ponting AO and Casey Stoner AM.
In addition, five young athletes will receive their Sport Australia Hall of Fame Scholarship and Mentor Program awards and have the priceless opportunity to meet their hall of fame mentors and be inspired by the presence of Australia’s sporting greats. As well as providing a $5,000 sporting grant the program offers a rare, money can’t buy, experience that nurtures and supports the future of Australian sport.
The Sport Australia Hall of Fame Legend and Chair, and America’s Cup hero John Bertrand AO said the theme for the 2019 gala is ‘Spirit of Australia’ and the class of 2019 will be fitting members of Australia’s most coveted sporting team.
“Sport is a defining and dominant part of Australian culture and in honouring sporting achievements, the Sport Australia Hall of Fame preserves, celebrates and shares the priceless sporting heritage to all Australians,” Bertrand said
“With the inductee and legend announcements, ‘The Don’ Award and most importantly our scholarship and mentoring program, we will continue to honour, celebrate and promote all that is wonderful about Australian sport – past, present and the future.”
The Sport Australia Hall of Fame plays a vital role in preserving and perpetuating Australia’s rich sporting heritage, whilst promoting the values of courage, sportsmanship, integrity, mateship, persistence, and excellence, all underpinned by generosity, modesty, pride and ambition.
The 35th Sport Australia Hall of Fame Annual Induction and Awards Gala Dinner
What: Australia’s most prestigious sporting awards ceremony
Date: Thursday 10th October 2019
Time: From 5:45pm (Media, VIP and Members) and 6:30pm (Guests)
Where: Palladium at Crown, Melbourne
Who: The largest collective gathering of Australian sporting greats and luminaries
The Induction of seven new Australian sporting greats into The Sport Australia Hall of Fame
Elevation of one Member as the 41st Legend of Australian Sport
Naming of ‘The Don’ Award winner
Presentation to 2019 recipients of the Scholarship and Mentoring Program awards
The Sport Australia Hall of Fame is determined to carry to Australians everywhere the symbol of excellence as represented by its 565 Members across all sports and genders. Membership of The Sport Australia Hall of Fame is the crowning achievement of a sporting career and represents the highest level of peer recognition for an individual’s contribution to his or her sport.